5 - W5 - Utah
Beach, 04:15 hours, June 6:
"Enemy warship heading towards own
position..!" - foamraising, and at high speed the american
destroyer is heading toward the coast line. Feldwebel Hein came
running, shouting to Jahnke: "Do I have permission to open fire
with the FK-16, Herr Lieutnant?". Jahnke noded: "Open fire
at will....!"."Rrrumms!" - the FK 16 let the
first shell go. Too short. "Rrrumms!". Too short
again. The destroyer heave to shore, turns the broad side, from where
she let them have it. First series of naval shells went too far into the
dunes behind the defense line. Second series went into the water, too
short, but the third series find its way precisely to the target. The
old FK 16 blows to pieces by a direct hit, and terminates the gun crew.
All there is left is the heavily damaged 88
milimeter anti aircraft gun. Gunners and members of the support unit
work feverish to make it operational......
Suddently somebody yell "The ships!!!".
Like an electric shock. The ships. Jahnke, pressing his eyes against
the range finder oculars. The view, that meets his eyes is impossible
- it is simply not true!! The invasion fleet. Vessels of various
size, large and small. An innumerable number of vessels. It IS true!
There was no doubt in his mind. They've come across the ocean, even
in bad weather, and they come despite the low tide......
"Rommel, this time you miscalculated..!"
Jahnke said to himself. They come at low tide. But - now they will
have to pass more than 800 yards of flat foreshore. Totally exposed
and without cover. But what good is that, when you have hardly any
Arthur Jahnke, holder of the Knights Cross, felt the tears of
rage. "We need a barrage..!" A Kradmelder (Dispatch) was
immediately sent off. Oberlieutnant Schön, by 13th Company and
their 12,2 centimeter battery of the 1261st Artillery regiment,
currently located at St. Martin de Varreville, two miles behind W 5,
was urgently reguested to drop his barrage on the foreshore, when
receiving a double green flare signal. Now, the landing crafts leave
the invasion fleet. They are clearly visible in binoculars. Jahnke
grab his flare gun and fired two green flares. Waiting........but the
barrage fail to appear. They will never know that the dispatch never
reached Oberlieutnant Schön. He was killed on his bicycle by an
Allied fighterplane, while desparately trampling his pedals for cover.....
June 6, 05:20 hours: Allied invasion forces hitting
the beaches of Utah.
coming..!' by Paul