The Bloody Bucket

« For me Normandy represented just D-Day but Geert changed all of that by broadening the context to encompass the Battle of Normandy. His work to help trace the steps of my Dad’s unit, starting with Operation Cobra was fantastic. Geert presented the Battle of Normandy through a series of visits to historic locations but added the extra touch that linked each event to individual stories with their acts of sacrifice and heroism. »

Jim Kane, son of Pfc. John V. Kane

Pfc. John V. Kane served in Company H, 110th Infantry Regiment, 28th Infantry Division after joining the unit in late July 1944 as a replacement. Drafted as a meat and dairy inspector in February 1941, Pfc. Kane would find himself in a Heavy Weapons Company in the midst of the deadly Normandy « bocage » between the towns of Percy and Sourdeval 3 years later. His Division, a National Guard unit from Pennsylvania, would soon become know to the Germans as the « bloody bucket » Division referring to the red keystone on the unit patch and the savage fighting it was involved in.

helmetJim Kane with local historian Guy Lelandais (with map) and civilian witnesses Théophile Levesque (holding a helmet) and Marcel Bazin (right) near Gathemo. The helmet belonged to a wounded GI of the 28th ID and was recovered by Mr. Levesque in 1944.

SourdevalThe Kane family and party at the 28th Infantry Division Memorial in Sourdeval. The deputy mayor (left) came to greet the Kanes to mark the occasion.