DESTRUCTION OF THE LA ROQUE BRIDGE
"The hole in the net"
Continuing Operation Cbra, the Anerican army converged
on Coutances from Périers and Saint-Lô; the strategy was
to cut off the Cotentin Peninsula at the "Sienne" river
estuary to entrap the remaining German troops in the mid-west
portion of the peninsula.
This is why the Allied air forces put such tremendous fire power into
destroying the La Roque Bridge which was the enemy's last possible
route toward Granville, Avranches, and Brittany.
Over twenty bombing raids were required to destroy three arches of
La Roque Bridge; several kinds of planes were used : dive bombers
and medium-sized "Marauders".
A Canadian pilot lost his life trying to dive-bomb the structure which
is located in an enclosed valley.
None the less, the strategic objective was not achieved because the
portion of the bridge over the "Soulles" river remained intact;
German troops were able to cross the river and escape by the Orval
road toward Hyenville and Granville.