D-Day, 6 June 1944
The Allied navies had several roles in the invasion. Underwater demolition swimmers ("frogmen") swam ashore to destroy underwater obstacles to the landing craft. Minesweeping ships combed the offshore waters for anti-ship mines. A fleet of transports carried the invasion troops across the channels, while squadrons of landing craft, skippered by Navy coxswains took them the final distance to the beaches. Divisions of battleships, cruisers and destroyers fired pre-landing bombardments to destroy German beach fortifications and "soften up" the enemy. And naval beach battalions went ashore under fire to take charge of logistical traffic on the beaches and to care for and evacuate the wounded.