In the early morning hours of June 6, 1944, Americans received word that three years of concerted war efforts had finally culminated in D-Day -- military jargon for the undisclosed time of a planned British and American action.
During the night, over 5,300 ships and 11,000 planes had crossed the English Channel and landed on the beaches of Normandy. The goal of every soldier and civilian involved in that effort was to drive the German military back to Berlin by opening a western front in Europe.
General Dwight David Eisenhower was in command of the invasion, which was code-named Operation Overlord.
More information at Today in History, June 6, 1944.