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Nicholas Allen | June 4, 2020

On June 6, 2020, The National WWII Museum will celebrate its 20th birthday on what is already among the most meaningful days on our calendar—the anniversary of D-Day. This year marks the 76th anniversary of those pivotal landings, the legacies of which were the sole focus of the Museum when it first opened in 2000. The Museum is celebrating and offers several online events and digital programming.

Schedule of events:

Live From Your Living Room
Thursday, June 4
7:00 p.m. (CT)

As part of the week’s commemorative programming, our Victory Six Swing Band will put on a special virtual performance. Tune in to enjoy the sounds of 1940s big band classics from the comfort of your home.

A Conversation with George Sarros, D-Day Veteran
Friday, June 5
11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. (CT)

The Museum’s mission is built upon its collection of oral histories, and getting to share the accounts with our audience puts a deeply personal spin on the Museum experience. Join Curator of Oral History Joey Balfour as he discusses the Normandy landings with George Sarros, a Navy veteran who served as a Motor Machinist’s Mate 3rd Class aboard USS LST-515. The 515 was one of a handful of LSTs set up as a hospital ship for the Normandy invasion. After offloading her cargo on Omaha Beach, LST-515 filled her decks with wounded American soldiers and returned with them to England.

Dr. Hal Baumgarten D-Day Commemoration Ceremony
Saturday, June 6
11:00 a.m. (CT)

Presented in memory of D-Day veteran and Museum friend Dr. Harold “Hal” Baumgarten, this commemoration ceremony will mark the 76th anniversary of the D-Day invasion with a solemn remembrance of the events of June 6, 1944, and conclude with a moment of silence.

The Dr. Hal Baumgarten D-Day Commemoration Endowment, made possible by the generous gift of Karen and Leopold Sher, ensures that Dr. Baumgarten’s legacy will live on in perpetuity and helps the Museum fulfill its mission to educate future generations about the events of World War II and its lasting impact.

Celebrating 20 Years: The National WWII Museum
Saturday, June 6
12:45 p.m. (CT) – “Celebrating 20 Years” Video Premiere
1:00 p.m. (CT) – Live Discussion

Boysie Bollinger, longtime Trustee and one of the Museum’s biggest champions, together with the Museum’s Founding President & CEO Emeritus Gordon H. “Nick” Mueller, PhD, and current President & CEO Stephen Watson, will reminisce about what it was like to be a part of the grand opening festivities on June 6, 2000; how World War II history has become a larger part of the nation’s fabric, spurring the expansion of The National WWII Museum; and the Museum’s continued transformation into one of the premier cultural and educational institutions in the world.


The Museum’s 20th anniversary commemoration has been generously supported in honor of Richard L. Duchossois from his loving children.

For more information, a full list of events, and to purchase advance tickets to visit the Museum, click here.