Memorial and bridge at Bretenoux
The bridge at Bretenoux over the river Cère on the D940. The view is from the north bank looking into the village over the river. The church with the monument listing all the names of the those killed on 9th June is a little further on, behind the houses on the left of view. The inscription on the monument in this view reads, "Here on the 9th June 1944, 20 young volunteers of the F.F.I. fell in combat." (see: Notes on Language and Terms used, for meaning of F.F.I.). The additional lower plaque with the white inscription records the events from the 6 June to 10 June and it reads:
"6 June 1944: The Normandy landings by allied troops. The resistance was ordered by all means to prevent the Germans from reaching the beach head
7 June 1944: Resistants at Bretenoux took up position at the bridge
9 June 1944: Arrival of the Panzer Division Das Reich. Bloody combat (20 FFI killed). Exactions from the local population (20 civilians killed). Burning of houses and barns
10 June 1944: Progression of the Division Das Reich. Massacre at Tulle, Oradour-sur-Glane and Limoges
Note that this lower plaque has an error, the events at Tulle were on 9th June not the 10th.
© Michael Williams: revised November 2008