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Breaking: Perriello introduces bill to save National D-Day Memorial

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Breaking: Perriello introduces bill to save National D-Day Memorial

     Washington, DC—Today, Congressman Tom Perriello introduced legislation in the House that would start the process of bringing the National D-Day Memorial in Bedford, under the supervision of the National Park Service. The legislation was written in consultation with the Memorial, which recently reported that it does not have enough money to sustain operations. Congressman Perriello has been working with Senator Mark Warner, who intends to introduce companion legislation in the Senate.

    “The National D-Day Memorial is a reminder of the bravery and heroism of our American armed forces, and we must not let it fail,” said Perriello. “The men we lost were local heroes, but the freedom and security bought with their sacrifice is a national treasure. So, too, is our D-Day Memorial.”

    Col. William A. McIntosh, President of the National D-Day Memorial Foundation said: “The foundation is extremely gratified that on the 65th anniversary of D-Day, our legislators have seen fit to introduce a long overdue measure to place the National D-Day Memorial under the umbrella of the National Park Service. This memorial is national in scope—indeed, over half its annual visitation is from outside Virginia—but it remains an important chapter in the history of Central Virginia, the region in our nation that experienced some of the severest losses of World War II.”

    Nineteen soldiers from Bedford died in combat on June 6, 1944. As the city’s population at the time was only 3,200, Bedford suffered the highest proportional loss of life of any American city on D-Day. The National D-Day Memorial was authorized by President Bill Clinton in 1996, and dedicated by President George W. Bush in 2001. The memorial attracts approximately 75,000 visitors a year.

    Perriello’s bill authorizes the Secretary of the Interior to study whether the D-Day Memorial meets the criteria for becoming a National Park, the first step for creating a National Park. The bill has gained support from Virginia’s congressional delegation, with Congressmen Rick Boucher (VA-09), Jim Moran (VA-08), Glenn Nye (VA-02), and Bobby Scott (VA-03) signing on as original co-sponsors.

    Perriello will join Sen. Warner, Sen. Jim Webb, Rep. Bob Goodlatte, and other local officials and military officers in commemorating the 65th Anniversary of D-Day at the Memorial on Saturday, June 6 at 11 a.m.