Battle for Carpiquet Airfield – Normandy 1944

Battle for Carpiquet Airfield – Normandy 1944

On 4 July, General Dempsey launches operation Windsor. The first target is the Carpiquet airfield; it was one of the initial objectives set for the D-Day, like Caen, and that has been resisting since nearly a month. The Canadians of the 3rd Infantry division 8th Brigade, reinforced by the Royal Winnipeg Rifles, conquer the town of Carpiquet on 5 July. But it takes three more days of fierce fightings to take the airfield to the Hitlerjugend panzergrenadiers, who defend their trenches, for much, to the bitter end. The Canadians have to push back several counter-attacks of the Leibstandarte division units supported by tanks; but on 8 July, the Allied forces are at the gate of Caen.The price of this partial victory had once more been high. The Winnipegs had 40 fatalities out of a total of 132 casualties; the North Shores reported 46 killed and 86 wounded. Carpiquet is still remembered as the graveyard of the North Shores because these were the heaviest losses it suffered during the entire campaign. "I am sure that at some time during the attack every man felt he could not go on", one of the North Shores recalled. "Men were being killed or wounded on all sides and the advance seemed pointless as well as hopeless. I never realized … how far discipline, pride of unit, and above all, pride in oneself and family, can carry a man even when each step forward meant possible death." It had been another hard lesson for Canadian soldiers who were quickly becoming accustomed to such horrors.

Posted by Joël Stoppels Battlefield Tours on Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Battle for Carpiquet Airfield – Normandy 1944

On 4 July, General Dempsey launches operation Windsor. The first target is the Carpiquet airfield; it was one of the initial objectives set for the D-Day, like Caen, and that has been resisting since nearly a month. The Canadians of the 3rd Infantry division 8th Brigade, reinforced by the Royal Winnipeg Rifles, conquer the town of Carpiquet on 5 July. But it takes three more days of fierce fightings to take the airfield to the Hitlerjugend panzergrenadiers, who defend their trenches, for much, to the bitter end. The Canadians have to push back several counter-attacks of the Leibstandarte division units supported by tanks; but on 8 July, the Allied forces are at the gate of Caen.

Battle for Carpiquet Airfield – Normandy 1944

Battle for Carpiquet Airfield – Normandy 1944

On 4 July, General Dempsey launches operation Windsor. The first target is the Carpiquet airfield; it was one of the initial objectives set for the D-Day, like Caen, and that has been resisting since nearly a month. The Canadians of the 3rd Infantry division 8th Brigade, reinforced by the Royal Winnipeg Rifles, conquer the town of Carpiquet on 5 July. But it takes three more days of fierce fightings to take the airfield to the Hitlerjugend panzergrenadiers, who defend their trenches, for much, to the bitter end. The Canadians have to push back several counter-attacks of the Leibstandarte division units supported by tanks; but on 8 July, the Allied forces are at the gate of Caen.The price of this partial victory had once more been high. The Winnipegs had 40 fatalities out of a total of 132 casualties; the North Shores reported 46 killed and 86 wounded. Carpiquet is still remembered as the graveyard of the North Shores because these were the heaviest losses it suffered during the entire campaign. "I am sure that at some time during the attack every man felt he could not go on", one of the North Shores recalled. "Men were being killed or wounded on all sides and the advance seemed pointless as well as hopeless. I never realized … how far discipline, pride of unit, and above all, pride in oneself and family, can carry a man even when each step forward meant possible death." It had been another hard lesson for Canadian soldiers who were quickly becoming accustomed to such horrors.

Posted by Joël Stoppels Battlefield Tours on Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Battle for Carpiquet Airfield – Normandy 1944

On 4 July, General Dempsey launches operation Windsor. The first target is the Carpiquet airfield; it was one of the initial objectives set for the D-Day, like Caen, and that has been resisting since nearly a month. The Canadians of the 3rd Infantry division 8th Brigade, reinforced by the Royal Winnipeg Rifles, conquer the town of Carpiquet on 5 July. But it takes three more days of fierce fightings to take the airfield to the Hitlerjugend panzergrenadiers, who defend their trenches, for much, to the bitter end. The Canadians have to push back several counter-attacks of the Leibstandarte division units supported by tanks; but on 8 July, the Allied forces are at the gate of Caen.