Alone in the dark French countryside, the young 101st Airborne Division paratrooper from Georgia assembled his rifle, got his bearings and began looking for other Americans among Normandy's hedgerows. In the days and weeks that followed, Cook took part in the now famous battles that began the liberation of France and led to Allied victory over Nazi Germany.
Cook, 87, was among the handful of World War II veterans who attended the 68th anniversary of the D-Day landings this week. U.S. service members from all the military branches took part in honoring them, something Cook said he was glad to see.
"We have to commemorate the lives of the guys we left here," Cook said. "They gave their lives for us and we should show them thanks."
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