Doncaster D-Day veteran dies at 97

A Doncaster veteran of D-Day has died at the age of 97.

Friday, 17th June 2016, 10:33 am
Updated Thursday, 25th August 2016, 8:26 pm
D-Day on June 6, 1944.

Royal Navy serviceman Ernest Rotherham was among thousands of Allied troops who took part in the Normandy landings during World War Two which proved to be the turning point in the conflict.

Mr Rotherham, who served with the Navy between 1941 and 1946 and also worked at Doncaster Plant Works during his career died earlier this month.

The serviceman, described in an obituary as the beloved husband of Jean, was also a "dearly loved dad, grandad and great grandad."

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He died on June and the funeral of Balby-based Mr Rotherham has already taken place at Rose Hill Crematorium.

D-Day, which took place on June 6, 1944, was the largest seaborne invasion in history and the operation began the liberation of German-occupied northwestern Europe from Nazi control, and contributed to the Allied victory on the Western Front.

The amphibious landings were preceded by extensive aerial and naval bombardment and an airborne assault with the landing of 24,000 American, British, and Canadian airborne troops shortly after midnight.

Allied infantry and armoured divisions began landing on the coast of France at 6.30am with the 50-mile stretch of the Normandy coast divided into five sectors - Utah, Omaha, Gold, Juno, and Sword Beach.

German casualties on D-Day were around 1,000 men. Allied casualties were at least 10,000, with 4,414 confirmed dead. Museums, memorials, and war cemeteries in the area host many visitors each year.