Near Sainte-Mère-Église in Manche, Normandy, France — Western Europe
General Gavin’s Foxhole
le 6 juin 1944
James M. Gavin
June 6, 1944
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: War, World II. A significant historical month for this entry is June 1875.
Location. 49° 24.041′ N, 1° 21.717′ W. Marker is near Sainte-Mère-Église, Normandie (Normandy), in Manche. Marker is on La Fière (Route D15), on the left when traveling west. Marker is about 3.5 km (2.2 miles) west of Sainte-Mère-Église. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 12 La Fière, Sainte-Mère-Église, Normandie 50480, France. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 14 kilometers of this marker, measured as the crow flies. 6 June 1944 at LaFiere Bridge (about 90 meters away, measured in a direct line); 80th Airborne Antiaircraft Battalion, 82nd Airborne Div. U.S. Army (about 90 meters away); PFC Charles DeGlopper Memorial (about 90 meters away); In Remembrance of the Airborne Spirit (approx. 3.3 kilometers away); 82nd and 101st Airborne on D-Day Clifford A. Maughan P.F.C. (approx. 3.4 kilometers away); House on Fire at Sainte-Mère-Église (approx. 3.5 kilometers away); U.S. Coast Guard Memorial at Utah Beach (approx. 13.7 kilometers away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Sainte-Mère-Église.
Regarding General Gavin’s Foxhole. On D-Day, June 6, 1944, paratroopers of the U.S. 82nd and 101st Airborne Divisions landed between midnight and 2 a.m. near the small town of Sainte-Mère-Église in Normandy, France. Their mission was to cut off resupply or escape routes that might be needed by German units defending the coastal beaches, and where, toward dawn that day, Allied forces would arrive in great strength.
Brigadier General James M. Gavin commanded the 82nd Airborne’s Task Force A, consisting of the 505th, 507th, and 508th Parachute Infantry Regiments. They were brought to France in 378 C-47 aircraft (the military version of the DC-3), to be followed later by additional troops in gliders. The 505th was to take Sainte-Mère-Église itself, while Gavin was the first to jump from the lead plane of the 508th. He landed near the Merderet River about 2 miles north
Seizing this bridge was a major objective, and it was the scene of fierce fighting for days before it was securely in Allied hands. (Some of these details are from Gavin’s 1978 book, On To Berlin: Battles of an Airborne Commander 1943–1946.)
Also see . . . Military history site. An overview of Gavin’s military career. (Submitted on September 24, 2012, by Roger W. Sinnott of Chelmsford, Massachusetts.)
Credits. This page was last revised on January 2, 2020. It was originally submitted on September 24, 2012, by Roger W. Sinnott of Chelmsford, Massachusetts. This page has been viewed 1,608 times since then and 182 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on September 24, 2012, by Roger W. Sinnott of Chelmsford, Massachusetts. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.