By Andrea StoneJune 12, 2014
FORT CARSON, Colo. -- It was a scene that couldn't have been found on Normandy 70 years ago -- German and American Soldiers leaning against an American jeep, chatting and laughing.
But at "D-Day Remembered," a living history day at Fort Carson, June 6, 2014, spectators were treated to re-enactors dressed in World War II-era uniforms, toting World War II-era weapons. This was the first year for the event, which was put on by the 4th Infantry Division Museum and the Colorado Military Historical Group.
"We're marking it as a major success," said Scott Daubert, museum director. "For a first one, I couldn't ask for a better event."
The day's activities included firepower demonstrations, vehicle displays and German and American encampments.
"Being an Army Family, I like to bring my kids to anything where they can see the importance of what Soldiers are doing, and see the history," said Jaime Delier.
The Bumgarner family actually visited Normandy two years ago.
"I think about being on that beach with the machine guns firing. When it was low tide, it was a long way, and (they) were under fire the whole time. It really puts it into perspective," said Jamey Bumgarner.
"It's really cool," said his son, 12-year-old Adam Bumgarner. "It's really nice to know about history. When we were at Normandy … it was weird standing where people died. I can't see how 18-, 19-, 20-year old men were running up on that beach."
Cristina Lewis' husband, a Soldier at Fort Carson, was at Normandy participating in D-Day anniversary events.
"I brought my kids because I wanted to be able to give them the historical background of what Daddy's doing," she said.
Daubert estimates that about 500 people attended the all-day event.
"We boosted our attendance here at the museum. We've boosted our (likes) on Facebook already," he said.
One of the attendees was a World War II veteran, Daubert said.
"Just having a World War II vet come through and see that we remember him, and we're not forgetting him … makes it worth it," he said.
Daubert already has ideas for next year's event.
"Most people thanked us for having the event and asked us if we were going to have it again," he said.
The opportunity to learn more about history was an important part of the day.
"I don't think they teach this today. I think we miss that," Jamey Bumgarner said. "I don't think (the American) people understand what our Soldiers did and what they persevered through."
For those interested in seeing more history, the 4th Infantry Division Museum is open Monday-Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.