The church in Sainte-Mère-Église in Normandy is no ordinary church. Towards the steeple is a parachute and underneath it an effigy of a paratrooper.

Church in Sainte-Mére-Église

Overnight on the 5th June 1944, American aircraft headed towards the town. The paratroopers started to land around 1.40am. However, many buildings were alight in the town and the descending soldiers were easily seen. As a result some of the paratroopers became caught in trees or utility poles and were shot.

The effigy represents American John Steele whose parachute became entangled on the church steeple. He pretended to be dead but was eventually cut down and taken prisoner by the German troops.

This stock photo below shows the effigy in more detail.

John Steele effigy

Some of the church’s stained glass windows also commemorate the D-Day events.

More Information about the church in Sainte-Mère-Église

Click here for more photos about the church in Sainte-Mère-Église.

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