Ranville Cemetery contains 2,239 graves of men and women who were killed in 1944. More than 1000 troops of the 6th Airborne Division were killed during the Battle of Normandy and the majority lie in the Ranville Cemetery. Many others were laid to rest in hundreds of cemeteries and churchyards in the areas surrounding the Caen Canal and the Seine.
The Commonwealth War Graves Commission took over the cemetery in Ranville shortly after the Second World War ended in 1946. However, in 1944 the cemetery was just a field in which soldiers were buried with makeshift wooden crosses.
Each year, on the anniversary of D-Day, Airborne and Commando veterans hold commemorative services at Ranville Cemetery.