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    Description

    Omaha Beach D-Day Flag Flown on LCT Landing Craft. 54" x 46" American flag with 48 stars, constructed of wool bunting. The sailcloth hoist is not marked and holds a suspension rope with two brass clips on either end. The white stripes are now a uniform grey and there is black discoloration from diesel exhaust, noticeably on the hoist. The ends are frayed and there are a few very small holes, but the flag is sound. The significance of this flag lies in its history. It flew on LCT-A 2227 during the D-Day invasion, June 6, 1944. It landed at point "Dog Green" on Omaha Beach near the Vierville Draw (the site of the opening sequence of "Saving Private Ryan"). It was commanded by 22-year old Ensign Victor Hicken who retrieved it and the ship's clock as souvenirs.

    Briefly, LCT-A 2227 was an armored version of the LCT. It departed Portland Harbor in England loaded with two tanks and a tankdozer from the 743rd Tank Division, along with U.S. Army and Navy demolition units as part of the Gunfire Support Group. It landed on Omaha Beach without incident, dislodging its cargo before coming under heavy mortar fire. During the attack, six of the voids or ballasts were punctured, the ramp chain was severed and the ramp hinge disabled. The crew was saved when the Germans re-directed their fire to another location. Despite the loss of two out of three engines, the ramp was repaired after a few days and the LCT was transported to Southampton for repairs, eventually being scuttled in the English Channel.

    Ensign Hicken returned home, but did not speak of his war-time experiences until attending a 50th anniversary D-Day commemoration in Normandy. He earned a PhD after the war, teaching history at the university level and writing a number of military histories, including "The American Fighting Man" and "Illinois in the Civil War". He passed away in 2010 at the age of 88. We include a Letter of Provenance from Hicken's son, Daniel, five photocopies of declassified war department reports from 1944 dealing with LCT-A 2227 as well as a copy of Joseph Balkowski's book "Omaha Beach D-Day" which includes four quotes or reminiscences from Ensign Hicken.


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    December, 2016
    11th Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 2
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 2,315

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