Among the historical events of the last war, one is of major importance, and that is General Patton's absolutely remarkable advance, which, setting off from Avranches towards Metz, liberated the territory in 54 days. The landing of French troops in the South of France and the landing of Allied troops depended on the speed of this advance, for the signal to land could not be given until Patton's army had advanced far enough.
The two extremes of this march to the East are Normandy and the Lorraine. These are the two provinces that suffered the most, for the landing was difficult. The entry into Metz was very tough. Furious battles took place outside the old fortress. There the armies of the fiery Patton were forced to stagnate for three months.
The relationship we had with General Walker, when he was in his headquarters in Thionville, resulted in Major de la Vasselais and myself being invited last year (1946) to travel to Texas, where the General had taken up a regional command.
I believe it was underway to Texas that the Liberty Road was born. Major de la Vasselais suggested the idea of creating this "Road." We discussed the idea with our American friends, who were enthused by it. Upon our return, we went to work. The final birth of the Liberty Road took place on December 10, 1946. Final, because, strictly speaking, the birth took place in Granville on June 5, 1946, when we got together with the mayors of Chartres, Rennes and Angers, and with Major de la Vasselais, who is also the Mayor of Saint-Symphorien (Eure-et-Loire). There we decided to act as a temporary committee. The following day we were in Ste-Mere-Eglise, the site of the first landing by parachute.
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