• Rank: Unidentified
  • Unit: 2nd Ranger Battalion

McDonald was one of a handful of Charlie Company Rangers who were ordered by Captain Miller to assault a German machine gun position near the Dog One draw on Omaha Beach. Either wounded or killed, McDonald and the others were not able to take out the machine gun, and Miller was forced to rely on the sniping prowess of Private Jackson to clear the position.


This character is uncredited. Oddly enough, this faceless extra is probably the genesis of this site. My grandfather, Robert McDonald, served in World War II and this name caught my attention during my first viewing of Saving Private Ryan. I had vaguely recalled that my grandfather had been in Normandy, and was curious to discover if he had gone through the meatgrinder at Omaha Beach.

As it turns out he landed with the 8th Infantry Division at Utah Beach about one month after D-Day, but later participated in a variety of combat in the European Theatre. I had never been all that curious about his military career, but began researching it and learning more about the war and the 8th Division in particular. This fueled my interest in learning more about D-Day and the Rangers as well.

While there are many that criticize Saving Private Ryan for its historical and technical inaccuracies, for me it directly lead to learning more about my grandfather's service in the military, and to learning more about the events that took place on June 6, 1944. That's more than most movies can claim. — Robert Oliver, SPROE webmaster.