(Michael Abrams/Stars and Stripes)

La Fiere, France, April 23, 2014: The statue of “Iron Mike” standing in a field at La Fiere, near Sainte-Mère-Église represents the paratroopers of the 82nd and 101st Airborne Divisions who fought in the area. The monument is located next to the Bridge in La Fiere where members of the 505th Parachute Infantry Regiment and 325th Glider Regiment fought against repeated German attacks to hold the bridge, June 6-9, 1944.

The base of the statue contains the inscription:

“A grateful tribute

to American Airborne soldiers

of D-Day

6 June 1944 to 7 June 1997”

The monument is a replica of the original “Iron Mike” statue at Fort Bragg, N.C., by sculptor and military spouse Leah Hiebert in 1960-1961 and modelled on Sgt. Major James Runyon.

Going to Normandy for this year’s 80th anniversary of D-Day? Be sure to keep an eye out for Stars and Stripes representatives at the various events and our coverage of the activities on our website.

Check out our 70th D-Day anniversary memorials gallery here.

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