D-Day vet recalls invasion 70 years later - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

D-Day vet recalls invasion 70 years later

Posted: Updated:
Robert Royce Robert Royce
BILOXI, MS (WLOX) -

It was June 6, 1944, when the allied forces stormed the beaches at Normandy to fight the Germans. This week, we look back 70 years at that infamous day known around the world as D-Day. The story is an important part of history, but for some, the day is still as real as it was seven decades ago.

Robert Royce will be 90-years-old this month, and even though his days in battle are long behind him, the memories will never leave him.

"I said, ‘Pop, I want to be where there's a lot of action.' He said, ‘are you crazy, you want to get yourself killed?'" said Royce.

He was drafted into the Army in 1943. He was only 18-years-old, but he was ready to fight. He and thousands of other soldiers were shipped off to be stationed near the English Channel.

"We stayed there for a whole year, waiting for the invasion," said Royce."Every night, the German bombers would come drop bombs all over the place."

Royce and his comrades knew each day could be their last, but they continued to fight and prepare for the big day.

"Finally the day came, and they said, ‘ok boys, get all your gear together'," said Royce.

The troops were loaded into trucks and shipped to the Higgins boats that would take them ashore, but getting there was half the battle. After getting out onto the open water, the Germans caught on.

"Here comes the German Air Force. Scraping, and dropping bombs on the convoys, and we never thought we were going to make it," said Royce.

He said it was by the grace of God that he finally made it ashore. That's where he saw many of his best friends for the last time.

 "They sent them to the front. They never came back," said Royce.

He said this day is rooted deep in his memories, and most days he thinks about his fallen comrades. and the life they didn't get to experience so that we could.

"All they have is a little white cross there, so all I can say is I'm living for them," said Royce.

This Friday will mark 70 years since the invasion of Normandy, which helped eventually bring down the German forces and end World War II.

Copyright 2014 WLOX. All rights reserved.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Gunshots inside a Gulfport home; one person is dead

    Gunshots inside a Gulfport home; one person is dead

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 12:39 PM EDT2014-07-23 16:39:15 GMT
    Gulfport police and the Harrison County coroner are investigating another murder. The coroner confirms an autopsy was being performed Wednesday on the victim.
    More >>
    Gulfport police and the Harrison County coroner are investigating another murder. According to a Gulfport Police Department news release, gunshots inside a Gulfport home killed a Carson Drive resident. Two suspects reportedly entered that home late Tuesday night and assaulted the victim while he slept. During that struggle, police report a gun went off, and a bullet struck the victim.More >>
  • Coroner: Girl's body was found in abandoned trailer's bathroom

    Coroner: Girl's body was found in abandoned trailer's bathroom

    Friday, July 18 2014 3:26 PM EDT2014-07-18 19:26:33 GMT
    It's been an extremely difficult day for family and friends as well as officers. So many people were crying, upset as the body of 5-year-old Janaya Thompson was removed from an abandoned trailer.More >>
    It's been an extremely difficult day for family and friends as well as officers. So many people were crying, upset as the body of 5-year-old Janaya Thompson was removed from an abandoned trailer. Coroner Gary Hargrove said Janaya's body was found in a bathroom.More >>
  • Two arrested for St. Martin burglary, TV theft

    Two arrested for St. Martin burglary, TV theft

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 11:44 AM EDT2014-07-23 15:44:17 GMT
    Investigators in Jackson County say two men who broke into a St. Martin home and stole a large television were arrested after they sold the TV a short time later.More >>
    Investigators in Jackson County say two men who broke into a St. Martin home and stole a large television were arrested after they sold the TV a short time later.More >>
Powered by WorldNow

208 DeBuys Road
Biloxi, MS 39531
(228) 896-1313

FCC Public File
EEO Report
Closed Captioning

All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Worldnow and WLOX. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.