RPRA Development Officer, Richard Chambers, travelled to Normandy with NATO’s Allied Rapid Reaction Corps (ARRC), who are based in Gloucester, very close to our HQ at The Reddings.
He met up with Signaller Harry Swann, to show him how to handle pigeons ahead of the celebrations of the 75th anniversary of the Allied landings at Normandy on D-Day, 6th June 1944.
On Thursday morning, at 7.10am – exactly 75 years from the moment when Sword Beach was secured – Signaller Swann released a lone pigeon to mark the flight of Gustav, the carrier pigeon that was awarded the Dickin Medal for bringing back the first news of the invasion from Normandy. This time, our bird flew back to its loft in Portsmouth.
— Allied Rapid Reaction Corps (@HQARRC) June 6, 2019
See below our gallery of images from the commemorations, and also watch a movie clip of the original presentation of Dickin Medals to Gustav and Paddy in 1944 on YouTube.