Press Release

Fortenberry Statement on Rededication of Higgins Boat Memorial in Columbus

Sep 12, 2021
Press Release

(COLUMBUS, NE) – Congressman Jeff Fortenberry (NE-01) made the following statement today at Pawnee Park in Columbus, Nebraska after rededicating a memorial to native son Andrew Jackson Higgins, who, in the words of World War II Supreme Allied Commander, Dwight D. Eisenhower, “was the man who won the war for us.”  The Congressman was accompanied by French military attaché, Air Brigadier General Cyril Carcy, who spoke on the companion Higgins Boat memorial on Utah Beach in Normandy, France, also built by the community of Columbus.  That memorial, first dedicated twenty years ago, sits at the spot where waves of American service members burst through Nazi lines and launched the liberation of Occupied France. 

“The dutiful, hard-working people of Columbus, Nebraska built a memorial to a man and his special boat that enabled American service members to quickly and efficiently land on the beaches of Normandy.  They also built a memorial to life––in honor of the incomparably brave men who disembarked from those Higgins boats and ran straight into enemy fire–––all to save civilization,” Fortenberry said. 

“This memorial honors the veterans who are still with us, the America citizens whose spirit of generosity helped liberate Europe, and the people of France, whose partnership and friendship we deeply value,” Fortenberry added.   

“Over 77 years since the D-Day landings, our generation faces another type of genocidal foe.  This ongoing existential battle for civilization will require the courage and creativity of The Greatest Generation, which lives on in all service members who inspire us with their devotion, their determination, and their willingness to die for what is good,” Fortenberry said.   

Photos from the Event:

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