Oak Ridge students to travel to Normandy for D-Day anniversary

American assault troops are shown in a landing craft approaching Omaha Beach in Normandy, France on D-Day, June 6, 1944.

A group of Oak Ridge High School students will travel to France for the 80th anniversary of D-Day in 2024.

At its recent meeting, the Oak Ridge Board of Education voted to approve this upcoming Naval Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps (NJROTC) trip. The group plans to attend a parade for the anniversary of the event.

School board agenda documents give the group’s full itinerary for June 3-11, 2024. In addition to participating in the parade, NJROTC plans to visit the D-Day Museum and various historical sites, memorials, and cemeteries for the American soldiers. The group will also visit various tourist attractions, including the fortress of Mont Saint-Michel, the Eiffel Tower, Notre-Dame, the Louvre and the Arc de Triomphe.

NJROTC cadets from Oak Ridge High School visited and honored local military cemeteries in Hawaii and laid a memorial wreath at the Arizona Memorial.

Education Council Vice-Chair Laura McLean moved the motion to approve the trip, and Member Ben Stephens seconded it.

ORHS NJROTC chief Ryan Nichols estimated the cost of the trip at $4,500 per student.

“Obviously the cost scares a lot of people off,” Nichols said.

However, he and Bruce Lay, executive director of Oak Ridge Schools, said there would be fundraising efforts and suggested monthly payments for each student rather than asking parents to pay. the total amount at once.