29 Jan The Spirit of Volunteerism
At the National D-Day Memorial, volunteering is a rewarding experience and a great way to give thanks to our veterans while meeting people from all over the world! We would not be able to honor and preserve the lessons and legacies of D-Day and World War II without our volunteer force that contributed 11,956 combined hours in 2017!
Volunteers serve in different capacities that include gate attendants, tour guides, gift store attendants, special events, and maintenance. If you’re interested in joining our team, come out for our annual Volunteer Orientation and Training at the Bedford Welcome Center (816 Burks Hill Road, Bedford, VA) from 8:00 a.m. to noon on either Friday, February 9 or Saturday, February 10. RSVP to Lindsay Poling at (540) 587-3619 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Below are reflections from a few of our current volunteers on their experience at the Memorial and why they choose to volunteer:
“I enjoy working in the gift store because all the staff are so friendly and helpful. It’s also nice to get to know the guides and hear their stories. I also enjoy meeting all the people who visit the gift store and talking with them about where they are from and how they heard about the site. Special events are also fun to work. I just enjoy doing anything to help out.”
– Margaret Anderson, Gift Store Volunteer
“As a tour guide, the D-Day Memorial volunteer experience for me is the personal one on one contact with all the veterans who visit the site, especially the World War Two and Korean War veterans. It’s an honor to welcome these men and women to our Memorial. They seem to feel comfortable telling their stories during their visits.
I also enjoy sharing the D-Day experience with the elementary, middle and high school student groups. The next generation needs to be reminded of the sacrifices made during Operation Overlord to carry on the memories.”
– Bill Rhodes, Tour Guide
“In Fall of 1998 my wife and I were fortunate enough to take a tour to Normandy. We did not realize until later that the majority of the people on the tour were related or members of Co.A 116th Regiment. After the tour was over, I knew then that if I volunteered it would be to honor to those who made the sacrifice on June 6, 1944. As a tour guide I’ve met many veterans and maybe thousands of visitors who listened as I told them what I’ve learned about D-Day and what might have happened if that great invasion had failed.”
– Joe Humphrey, Tour Guide
“It took me 11 years to be able to move to Bedford. The entire time, I knew I wanted to volunteer at the D-Day Memorial. I have not been disappointed. I love our country and am grateful for those who serve. It is an honor to be able to meet and talk with veterans from many decades and to meet their families. It is a true privilege to volunteer at the National D-Day Memorial.”
– Trudy Edwards, Gift Store Volunteer
“To be a volunteer tour guide at the D-Day Memorial for the last twelve years has been a privilege: to honor D-Day participants; to meet WW II survivors; to show appreciation to/for ALL military service people, past and present; and to explain/teach the lessons of valor, fidelity, and sacrifice to students of all ages…..Often, we have family members share their particular stories and express their gratitude for what we do here to preserve the legacy of the ‘Greatest Generation.’”
-Twila Ross, Tour Guide