SEWICKLEY (KDKA) — Sixty-eight years ago today, Warren Goss was thinking one thing.
“‘Lord get me out of this mess,’” he said.
June 6, 1944 was D-Day and hitting Utah Beach was a 19-year-old Goss. From the moment the gate on his Higgins boat went down, it was all about survival.
“When it went down, a couple guys in the front didn’t make it, so I went out the side,” Goss said.
Once on shore death and confusion was everywhere he looked. The only order that mattered for GI’s was this one: “Get the hell off the beach.”
“Everybody did their thing and there was nobody was leading anybody,” he said. “We trained a whole year for that – get inland as far as you can get. As far as you can get, get in there.”
Fighting raged on. The Germans kept shooting. The Americans needed ammo to return fire. Goss was quick, so he was sent back to the beach area to get bullets and grenades.
It was there he saw something he remembers vividly – the dead.
“Big long row … I tell you head to toe, head to toe all down in a row. I bet you there was a hundred feet of them in there.”
Somehow Warren Goss made it on to the Battle of the Bulge, the Ruhr Valley and eventually into Germany for the Nazi’s surrender.
But it all started for him on that cold June morning soaked and scared. In some ways this 87-year-old Sewickley resident has never left.
“Your mind honest to God is like a photo book,” he said. “Even in this day, whenever I’m on my motorcycle and I see something and it reminds me of something that happened there. It looks the same as it did there. And it’s just like a memory book – it keeps coming back.”