NORMANDY, France -- Army Sgt. 1st Class Erich A. Frees stands on hallowed ground, as he and hundreds of other American service members were commemorating the 70th Anniversary of the Normandy D-Day invasion in 1944, that changed the course of World War II and history. "Honoring our history, securing our future" is the reason the American service members are here today.
Frees is a member of 3rd Battalion, 73rd Cavalry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division from Fort Bragg, N.C., and spent approximately a week in the Normandy region, participating in ceremonies and representing the Americans who fought here 70 years ago.
"I am extremely honored to take part in this 70th Anniversary jump into Normandy. This will be a lifetime highlight to remember. The people of France have been tremendously grateful and hospitable," Frees said.
Army Sgt. Erich Frees
Soldiers such as Frees remain indebted to the veterans whose service demonstrated the selfless actions of the "greatest generation" who not only served to protect and defend our nation, but were part of a global force to defend peace and strengthen our ties with an emerging Alliance. The selfless actions by all allies on D-Day continue to resonate 70 years later as U.S. forces in Europe remain steadfast in our commitment to our European partners and NATO Allies.
Frees is the son of Allen And Joan Frees of Cape Coral.
He is a 1991 graduate of Delano High School, Delano, Minn. He earned an bachelor's degree in 1996 from University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, Eau Claire, Wis.