WWII Journal: Paul Farnum, 5 June 1944

With the Allied Armies on the brink of the long awaited invasion of Europe, Life Magazine ran a cover story on the "U.S. infantry." Life illustrated their story with a couple-of-years-old stock photo of U.S. infantrymen marching in formation, including Paul Farnum (far right, one up from the bottom).

“D-Day,” the long anticipated Allied invasion of Europe, originally scheduled for today, is postponed due to poor weather. General Eisenhower and his staff hope for better weather tomorrow.

Meanwhile, Life Magazine features “The U.S. Infantry” in the cover story of its 5 June 1944 issue.

On the cover of this week’s LIFE are a few of the men who will make or break the coming invasion of Europe. They are the U.S. infantry – lean, hard, professional infighters, part of the biggest and best Army the U.S. has ever put in the field. Under the command of Lieut. General Omar N. Bradley (see pp. 100-112), they will be the ones to prove the fiber of this Army on D-day.

Folks back home in Millington, Michigan are thrilled to see Paul Farnum on the cover.


Since Paul is a Staff Sargent, the photo is clearly not recent or current. Another relative of Paul’s later researched the photo but was been unable to pin down the exact circumstances under which the photo was taken.

S/Sgt Paul Farnum was one "of the men who will make or break the coming invasion of Europe."

Paul’s 79th Infantry Division has been attached to the U.S. Army VII Corps along with the 4th, 90th, and 9th Infantry Divisions. The 9th Infantry Division saw action in the North African campaign of 1942. The remaining divisions in VII Corps, including the 79th, have no prior combat experience in WWII. They will soon be tested.

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