101-year-old Julius Boreali, a resident of Upstate New York and Coast Guard veteran, vividly remembers his remarkable experience during the historic D-Day invasion.

Born in Howes Cave, home of Howe’s Caverns, on December 15, 1922, Boreali found himself stationed in Falmouth, England, as part of the preparations for the pivotal amphibious assault on Omaha Beach in Normandy, France.

Having enlisted in the Coast Guard to evade the high risk of being drafted into the Army in 1942, Boreali embraced his duties as a baker stationed on a tank landing ship, known as an LST. These vessels played a critical role in the success of the Allied forces by transporting troops, vehicles, and supplies to the shores of France during the invasion.

As the fateful days leading up to D-Day approached, Boreali's LST, designated as LST-27, embarked on its mission with 300 men from the Army's 29th Infantry Division on board. Amid the chaos and destruction that unfolded on June 6, 1944, Boreali shared his story with the Department of Veteran Affairs of dodging German artillery and rescuing wounded comrades on the blood-stained beaches of Normandy.

One story that Boreali shared was the miraculous encounter with a childhood friend, Freddie Wessel, amidst the mayhem of war. The emotional reunion between Boreali and Wessel on the battlefield served as a reminder of the bonds that tied soldiers together during times of peril and uncertainty.

WIBX 950 logo
Get our free mobile app

Following the D-Day landings, Boreali and his crew at LST-27 embarked on numerous perilous trips between England and France, ferrying essential supplies and reinforcements to sustain the Allied operations against the German forces. Despite the constant threat posed by enemy mines and hostile engagements, Boreali and his fellow sailors valiantly fulfilled their duties, ensuring the success of the Allied campaign in Europe.

Today, at the age of 101, Julius Boreali reflects on his service with immense pride, and his story serves as a reminder to both New Yorkers and citizens of the world of the sacrifices and heroism displayed by the brave men and women who served during World War II.

KEEP READING: Scroll to see what the big headlines were the year you were born

Here's a look at the headlines that captured the moment, spread the word, and helped shape public opinion over the last 100 years.

Gallery Credit: Andrew Lisa

LOOK: See the iconic cars that debuted the year you were born