D-Day Veterans are set to share their stories on the USS Yorktown

Local News

MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (WCBD) Patriots Point Naval and Maritime Museum is welcoming a group of WWII D-Day Veterans aboard the USS Yorktown. Troops stormed the beaches of France on June 6th 1944 and today, 10 heroes are set to share their stories…75 years after the invasion. Eight of the ten veterans are listed below:


Edison (Ed) Myers

Staff Sgt. Army

Landed at Utah Beach D-Day +2

Fought on frontlines through France

Earned Silver Star


Johnny Hill

Army, Company A, 5th Ranger Battalion

Landed at Omaha Beach on D-Day

Myrtle Beach

Otto Markert


Landed at Omaha Beach

Myrtle Beach

Stewart Swift

Army Private

27th Infantry Division

Landed at Utah Beach

Was a Plane Mechanic and Given A gun and orders to invade Utah Beach

Myrtle Beach

Leonard Gardner


Landed at Omaha Beach


David O Neil Derrick


612th Tank Destroyer Battalion

C Company

Drove 75 mm and 90 mm tanks

Landed on Omaha Beach on June 16 at 9am


Marion David

Attached and unassigned at first when he got to England

Private Army, 12th Traffic Regulating Group

Was sent to the 6th Traffic Regulating Group

Met MP’s and assigned outfits to landing crafts

Landed at Utah Beach

Became a messenger/runner for info to and from frontlines


Curtis Outon

Army 1942-1945

38th Infantry, 2nd Division, C Company

Landed at Omaha Beach

Participants will hear first-hand accounts of the battle to take the beaches of France. The program starts at 10:30am with a meet and greet happening from 1:30-2:30pm. It is free to attend.

The allied invasion required two years of planning, training, supplying, and nearly 160,000 American, British, and Canadian troops. 75 years ago, Veteran John Stewart Swift recalls a feeling of futility washing over him. He says he felt like they were probably not going to make it because the casualties were so high. Today, he is proud of what he and his servicemen accomplished, “People come up to me on the street and say thank you…that’s probably one of the proudest moments of my life and I’m getting it every day”.

The Executive Director for Patriots Point says a few months ago, he wasn’t sure if the museum could find any men that were part of the D-Day invasion—Now he’s encouraging everyone to come out to meet the heroes, Unfortunately, this will likely be the last time most people will ever have an opportunity to meet a D-Day veteran and shake his hand. I hope the community will take advantage of this chance to thank the men who risked their lives to save the world from Nazi Germany.

Attendees will also have the opportunity to learn about the destroyer USS Laffey’s role in supporting the invasion of Utah beach. The warship, which is on display at the museum, is one of only three D-Day Allied warships still in existence.  The United States Flag that flew on the ship on June 6, 1944 has been restored by museum staff and will be unveiled for the first time during the D-Day program.

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