US ambassador marks D-Day with Normandy parachute jump

PARIS, June 3 Sun Jun 3, 2012 4:40pm EDT

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PARIS, June 3 (Reuters) - U.S. ambassador to France Charles Rivkin took part in a mass parachute jump over the coast of Normandy on Sunday to mark the 68th anniversary of the Allied invasion of mainland Europe in World War Two.

Following in the footsteps of Allied paratroopers who parachuted into German-occupied Normandy hours before the seaborne assault on the beaches, Rivkin made the leap despite strong winds which resulted in light injuries to six fellow jumpers, France 3 television reported.

"France has been our ally from the start and the evidence is here in this field," Rivkin told TF1 television after landing. Some 100 U.S., French and German paratroopers took part in the jump.

Thousands of U.S and other Allied paratroopers began the assault on German coastal defences with a dangerous night jump behind enemy lines early on June 6, 1944. (Reporting by Leigh Thomas; Editing by Tim Pearce)

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