is a documentary film considering
the experience of WWII veterans returning to Normandy
for the 70th anniversary of the D-Day landings.
In 2014, I traveled with a group of D-Day veterans
as they retraced their wartime route through England and France.
I was twenty years old—
the same age the veterans were when they stormed the beaches.
My late great grandfather,
Sgt. Parker Davie Hanna Jr.,
belonged to the same division as these men, and so I was also following the path he took.
A young woman joins a group of D-Day veterans
on a pilgrimage to retrace their route from WWII.
SUNKEN ROADS follows their journey,
painting an intimate portrait of these soldiers during their final return to Normandy.
SUNKEN ROADS tells a story of inter-generational friendship,
offering a new perspective on D-Day
by presenting the memories of 90-year-old men through the eyes of a 20-year-old woman.
Filmmaker Charlotte Juergens spent weeks traveling with the veterans
and serving as a health aide to Don McCarthy, who suffered from Parkinson’s Disease.
Don and the other veterans came to see Charlotte as a granddaughter,
trusting her with their stories and speaking openly
about the trauma they experienced in Normandy as young men.
SUNKEN ROADS is particularly timely,
given the recent 75th Anniversary of D-Day on June 6, 2019.
The film allows us to see this history through the eyes of the men and women who lived it,
to understand the meaning of D-Day as both an historic event and a personal nightmare,
and to contemplate its significance 75 years later.