NORMANDY, France -- The 16th Sustainment Brigade command and staff learned the logistical obstacles, opportunities, and heroism of the Allied forces during D-Day while on a brigade staff ride here, March 6.

"Our future NATO Allies displayed their strategic sea and airlift capabilities in Normandy, enabling the alliance through joint interoperability while exercising the tenets of mission command," said Col. Michelle M.T. Letcher, 16th Sustainment Brigade Commander. "Capitalizing on speed of assembly, speed of decision and strength through unity, the Allies set the conditions for eventual victory in Europe."

Retired British Brig. Gen. J.R. Smales and retired U.S. Army Capt. Sam Doss instructed the staff on the planning and execution of the largest amphibious assault in world history. Both instructors highlighted the Allies' logistical feats that set the conditions for victory, such as the Red Ball Express, the Mulberry harbour, and Operation PLUTO (pipeline under the ocean).

"Knowing the sustainment capabilities at the Mulberry B harbour allowed combat commanders to plan confidently," said Smales, who is now an instructor with CSM Solutions Inc. "Speed of logistics won the battle."

After appreciating the difficulties and successes on Gold, Omaha and Utah beaches, the Knight's brigade visited the La Cambe Germany war cemetery and the Normandy American cemetery to remember the Soldiers who fought bravely and gave their lives during the Second World War.