CHERBOURG, France (NNS) -- Sailors assigned to guided-missile destroyer USS Oscar Austin (DDG 79) stood alongside veterans and dignitaries at a Navy memorial ceremony overlooking Utah Beach in France, June 5.
Oscar Austin Sailors honored those service members who were lost during the largest one-day amphibious assault ever recorded. This year marks the 70th anniversary of the D-Day invasion along Normandy's coastline June 6, 1944.
U.S. Navy Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Jonathan Greenert was also in attendance for the memorial ceremony.
"I'm so honored that Oscar Austin is here in support of this year's D-Day commemorations," said Quartermaster 2nd Class Alexandra Wood, a member of Oscar Austin. "To be here at Utah Beach is one of the most humbling experiences I've had so far in my naval career."
During the ceremony, Greenert placed a wreath at the Navy Memorial to pay tribute to the heroism and sacrifice of the more than 160,000 allied troops 70 years ago.
"The sacrifices made by those 70 years ago continue to be an inspiration to myself and Sailors in today's Navy," said Master-at-Arms 1st Class James Jansma, who was also reenlisted by Greenert. "This day is very important to remember."
The event was one of several commemorations of the 70th anniversary of D-Day operations conducted by Allied forces during World War II June 5-6, 1944. More than 650 U.S. military personnel have joined troops from several NATO nations to participate in ceremonies to honor the events at the invitation of the French government.
Oscar Austin, homeported in Norfolk, Va., is on a scheduled deployment supporting maritime security operations and theater security cooperation efforts in the U.S. 6th Fleet area of operations.
U.S. 6th Fleet, headquartered in Naples, Italy, conducts a full range of maritime security operations and theater security cooperation missions in concert with coalition, joint, interagency, and other partners in order to advance security and stability in Europe and Africa.