Naval Signal for Norman Invasion better Than a Nod from a Meteorologist
Group Captain J.M. Stagg, who doesn’t seem the type to blow a trumpet to announce good weather.
Chief Meteorologist, Royal Air Force
Stagg headed the committee of weatherman, British and American, who advised General Eisenhower on when to launch the Normandy Invasion. Stagg was actually the most expert meteorologist in all of the United Kingdom and was only temporarily in uniform.
On 27 September, William, Duke of Normandy was aboard his flagship Mora anchored in the estuary of the Somme River. It had taken all day to get his fleet assembled to mount what would be the only successful invasion of England since Roman times. The Duke did not want to reach the English coast until daybreak and since the English Channel isn’t that wide, he had to wait until the middle of the night before sailing.
In Make A Signal, retired Royal Navy captain Jack Broome writes;
“At the appointed time the signal to proceed was made by lighting a lantern at Mora’s masthead followed by the sounding of a trumpet. This seems worthier of such an occasion than what happened when the next successful invasion across the channel was launched 878 years later, by a nod from a meteorologist.”
Source: Make A Signal! by Captain Jack Broome, D.S.C., RN