Revisit to the Battlefield
John Schaffner
106th Infantry Division
September - October 2007

The last visit to the Battleground (again.)

Yes, again, at our age one never knows what may be gaining on you so it is best to do it when, and if, you can.

"Will I ever come this way again? This place that came very close to claiming my young life? No, I think not. If I never see this desolate, destroyed, cold, hard, place again it will be too soon." That is what I thought sixty-three years ago.

The way it turned out, I did return. I have now returned to that place in Belgium six times beginning in 1992. It is not how I think about it now, as above, nor is it how any of you might have remembered it from that cold winter of 1944-45. If you ever return to the Ardennes and meet the people there you will be in for a treat.

Oh yes, the first time that I visited the place that took on the name of Parker's Crossroads,

it was like a visit into the twilight zone. Even the fog was present, as it is many mornings there. I could imagine the event of 19 - 23 December 1944 at a place called Baraque de Fraiture. It was emotional.

So, what draws me back? That is an easy question. It is the people who live there. They are warm and caring, and they remember being occupied by the Germans for four long years. They remember the occupation by hostile forces.

They remember being denied any and all of their former freedoms when the Nazis ruled the land. They remember having their families torn apart and the murders perpetrated by the Nazi conquerors when they attacked. They remember that the Americans came, drove the invaders out, and restored their freedoms. They treat the returning GI as a liberator. How could I not like that?

We didn't need that much added inspiration to make another trip to the Ardennes; John Gatens, Dave Ford, and me. There had been men from units not mentioned on the existing memorials at the crossroads at Baraque de Fraiture who fought there with us. Peter Schreiber, Associate Member, whose father, Ted, fought and was severely wounded at the battle for the crossroads, was one. Peter took the initiative to establish a memorial there honoring those soldiers from other units not previously mentioned on the existing memorial(s.) They were the Troop D/87th Cavalry Recon Squadron, (Schreiber's unit,) D/203 AAA, 7th AD, and the 325GIR/ 82nd AB Division. They were men important to the defense of the crossroads fighting along with the 589th.

Peter Schreiber spearheaded the effort to establish the new memorial through the American Battle Monuments Commission, The Commune of Vielsalm, and the CRIBA organization. Peter had it done and the dedication was set for 29 September 2007. Congratulations and hand salute to Peter. (See The Cub vol 63#2 Jan/Feb/Mar 2007)

We were off and running on Monday 24 September. Dave and I used the Amtrak train to travel to Newark, NJ Airport where we met John Gatens and made our connection to the Continental Airlines flight to Brussels. On board a Boeing 777-200ER and rolling at 7:30 PM we were soon at an altitude of 38,000feet and cruising along at about 600 mph. We were given special attention by the Flight Attendant on the airplane. He had been informed by Dave that he was carrying precious cargo, namely us. It happened that this Flight Attendant had an interest in the history of WW II in Europe so we were able to pass some time with him during the long time in the air. He seemed very interested in our personal experience.

On arrival over Belgium our flight took us into Brussels Airport where we picked up a rental car and got on the road. By this time it was early on 25 September and we were beginning to feel the effects of sleep deprivation. Jet lag, they call it. It is now Tuesday, a day later and no sleep.

Dave assumed the driving so I settled in to navigate the road maps. As we approached the town of Tienen we discussed the possibility of leaving the autobahn and paying a visit to our good friend, Jacques Rummens. Thinking that Tienen would be a small village we were very surprised to find that it is a large town of perhaps 20,000. None the less, here we are, with no clue to where Jacques lives. Dave parked the car downtown and approached a gentleman on the sidewalk. He was at a loss when Dave showed him an envelope with Jacques' return address on it. A couple then came walking by and Dave showed them the envelope with the address and asked how to find it. This man looked at the envelope and said,"Jacques Rummens, I know him. My son lives across the street from Jacques. I will take you there." Just how lucky can we be? The couple got their car from a nearby parking lot and led us through the town to the address. When we arrived Jacques was on the street outside of his house. When he saw us he was totally surprised. Of course we visited with Jacques and Suzanne for a while and received some refreshment of soft drinks and some of those great tasting home-made Belgian waffles. When we left to continue our journey Suzanne loaded us down with more waffles to eat on the road and Jacques got in his car to lead us back to the highway. What a wonderful start to the trip that was to be! Unbelievable!!

Later that day we met with (now) an old friend, Eddy Monfort. I have known Eddy since about 1993 when he was accumulating material for his first book depicting the battles around Manhay, Malempre, and Baraque de Fraiture. Eddy has always been the most gracious host and has visited with us in The States several times. He was spending a week of his vacation time to entertain Chuck and Mary Lowery, (424/I) who were coincidentally visiting at the same time. We all went to a very nice restaurant, the Contes de Salme, in Vielsalm for dinner. (I had a poached trout, fresh out of the Salm River.)

It was early to bed on this night so after eating we proceeded to the
village of Hebronval to claim our rooms at the Hotel V'Hebron. Of course it was a "walk-up" like most of the older places in the rural areas of Belgium.
It was a struggle for these old legs to negotiate the narrow stairs to our
rooms, John and I took over the two rooms on the second floor, and Dave was pushed to the third floor. After all, he is younger than we are.

Wednesday, 26 September 2007

 We were up about 7:30, but it was not a full night’s sleep for any of us. The disruption of our normal routine is telling and neither of us slept the night through. This morning we were greeted with the usual (for this time of year) fog and drizzle. We had a nice (Continental) breakfast at the hotel and discussed our proposed activities for the day. In the morning we drove to Eddy Monfort’s house at Malempre’and visited with his Mom and Dad and his new family. We were all anxious to meet one another. Eddy has taken on considerable responsibility for two little girls and their mother, Carine. By the time we will see them again there will be still another mouth to feed.

We then drove to the village of Manhay. During the battle every building was totally destroyed or nearly so. The area here was bitterly fought for by the 517th PIR and the 424th Infantry Regiment as the ‘bulge’ was being reduced in January 1945. The 592nd FA may have helped by laying a few 155 rounds in support of the attack. Those were the days when I was employed by the 592nd, just don’t ask where I was at the time. While there I made photos of several monuments but was unable to find the one dedicated to the 517th PIR. I finally found it in the building housing the Community Center. It seems that it had been removed from its outside location for safekeeping while the building it was on was being renovated. This was important to me as I have a close friend at home who is a veteran of the 517th PIR and fought here.

From Manhay we drove a short way to the village of Sadzot. Here again, this village was engaged in a bloody battle between the 509th PIR, the 87th Mortar Battalion, the 289th Reg./75th ID and the German 2nd and 12th Panzer Divisions. It was a night time event on 27 - 28 January that occurred when the advancing German troops came upon the village occupied by the Americans. Most of the American troops were asleep and were taken by surprise. A fierce battle ensued with many casualties on both sides. (Read Bloody Clash at Sadzot by Wm. B. Breuer)

In year 2004 when we visited with the folks of the WW II Society in Germany, a mostly military group of Americans living in Europe, we met and have kept in touch with, Bob Huffaker. Bob is retired and living currently in Holland. He was anxious to meet with us so we had set a time to have lunch with him at Baraque de Fraiture. We were together around the crossroads, talked about the battle and made some photos. Then about 3:00 in the afternoon Bob had to leave for home. About this same time we spotted Bernadette Lejeune-Lengler outside of the Auberge du Carrefour across the road and went over to speak with her. She invited us to make our lodging at the Auberge for the time we were to spend there. Of course we accepted. The place was officially closed, but Bernadette gave us the key to the back door so we could come and go at our convenience. We immediately went back to Hebronval, checked out and moved our things to the Baraque for the rest of our stay. Every morning Bernadette was there to provide breakfast for us. In the evening we were again at the restaurant for supper and were joined by our good friend, Andre’ Hubert, and Bernadette. Bernadette’s daughter, Esmeralda, who is gradually taking over the operation of the businesses was our waitress for the evening. It was another delightful day but again we were just a little anxious to get to our rooms and relax. Sleeping on this night was better. We were catching up.

--Dinner at Parker’s Crossroads with Bernadette Lejuene-Lengler, John Gatens 589/A, John Schaffner 589/A, & Andre’ Hubert, CRIBA

Thursday 27 September 2007

On this morning Bernadette had arranged for us to visit with her mother, Maria, former proprietor of the business at Baraque de Fraiture. Maria has been residing in a local nursing facility now for some time. Unfortunately, she has become totally dependent on advanced nursing care and spends her days in a wheelchair. This is a condition that we are hearing more of these days.

When we arrived we found that Andre' Hubert (Past President of CRIBA) was already there to join with us and act as our translator. Besides us, there was a group of the residents sitting at the table all ready for us. It was a large table and had been set up for our little party, decorated with flowers and a display of the American and Belgian flags. There was several dishes of snacks and wine glasses, and bottles of sparkling wine for us and soft drinks for the ladies. Maria was brought in her wheel chair. One of the ladies told us that she had been awake all night anticipating the visit by the American soldiers. There was much lively conversation, all in French, and then one of the ladies read a statement that she had prepared. Andre' made the translation for us:

"Dear American friends,
We are happy to receive you in our country for which you did so much. Mr. & Mrs. Lengler-Lehaire, their children and grandchildren told me of your kindness and of your great heart for their family. That is why we thank you from the bottom of our heart.
Welcome in our home. Thank you. Enjoy your visit at the Maison de Repos et de Soins - Vielsalm.

(Signed) Madam PIRSOUL Marie and the residents. Marie Hanzen, Marie-Therese, Pascal, Mariette, Ambre, Demazy-Lebecque Laure et Pierre, Mme Reynaud, Veronique, Monique, the nurses and the persons in charge."

John, Dave and I wish to thank those who made this visit possible; Doctor Deleuze, Responsible of the Home, the nurses and Sister Marie-Madeleine.  Also, thanks go to Bernadette and Andre' for escorting us.

-Typical morning fog

093, 096, 098 with Maria Lehaire 1926-2007 -----
Bernadette was our guide on this day and had arranged for us to visit a new WW II Museum at the village of Ennal. A local man, Bernard Michel, totally renovated a huge stone barn to accommodate a vast collection of materiel retrieved from the battlefields of the Ardennes. Of course much was donated also by veterans of the battle, and their histories are depicted with dioramas and displays. This may be a smaller museum than some, but it is a very interesting place for a veteran, or anyone interested in the history of WW II to visit. One can spend a lot of time there. It has been a personal project for Bernard Michel and he has obviously spent much time and energy with it. Our compliments to Bernard.

-typical Ardennes house-----

That evening we had made a date with our good friend, Henri Rogister. Henri met us at Baraque de Fraiture and drove us to his home in Liege to meet with his wife, Renee', and 20 month old granddaughter, who he refers to as the "Tornado." She is a beautiful little girl, the kind we 'thank heaven' for.

After our visit with the Rogisters, Henri drove us to the home of Albert and Annie Fosty for a wonderful dinner. Annie is a great cook and always makes sure nobody goes away hungry. That time we had a fish soup and an entree of pork loin, and of course a nice dessert. I must say that these ladies who host us are all great cooks and we are served nothing but the best. When we departed the Fosty's Henri led us back to the ramp to the highway so we had no problem getting back to the Baraque that evening. We let ourselves in through the back door.

-Gatens, Schaffner and our hostess Annie Fosty-----

Friday 28 September 2007
On this day we drove to Poteau, a village not too far away and located directly in the path of the advancing German Army in 1944. Today it is very peaceful and one driving through would never suspect there had been bitter fighting here. The purpose of our going there was to visit the Museum established and maintained by Rob and Jacqueline de Ruyter. Their museum was not officially open but a knock at their door was all that it took to gain admission. We have known these folks from prior visits so they were happy to be able to entertain us. We spent a lot of time inside the museum and then were invited into the house where we had a small refreshment and friendly conversation. It was a very nice visit with this gracious couple. They have worked hard on their place and it shows. Rob has restored several German, Russian, and American vehicles to running condition. He will treat groups to rides around the patch when ordered. They also maintain a website under Poteau Museum for you PC users.

-Jacqueline de Ruyter acquaints Dave Ford with the museum at Poteau-----

Leaving Poteau we drove to Gouvy and visited for a too short time with old friends, Adda and Willi Rikken. This couple has been a true friend of American veterans visiting the Ardennes. Their home is always open and their services as guides always available. We consider ourselves lucky to include them among our many Belgian friends.

The various villages along our route brought to life the places of the battles we have only read about. Although the physical damage has been repaired, sometimes stone for stone, the inhabitants will never forget (or forgive) the atrocities suffered during the occupation and consequent battles that occurred in these villages. To pass through these places one would find it hard to believe that many of the houses and other buildings are new since the war. The stye of architecture has remained the same.

We drove on to Malempre' to Eddy Monfort's home. Eddy had arranged a party at his house for Peter Schreiber and his mother, Chuck and Mary Lowrey, Christian Kraft (CRIBA Pres.), Dave, John and me, his mother and father, and his family. He had a houseful, including the three kids running around. It was a very festive time and we sat at the table to a real nice dinner. We became better acquainted with Chuck and Mary Lowery, Peter and his Mom, Mary, and the other guests. Sure, there is something of a language barrier at times, but a smile and a nod usually overcomes that. Seems like we never have to go to bed hungry (or dry.) It was late when we returned "home" to The Auberge.

Rosemary Schreiber and son, Peter Schreiber with vets at home of Eddy Monfort
 Dinner at Monfort's, Mary & Chuck Lowery (424/I) in foreground,-----

Saturday 29 Sept 2007

This was the day that we were anticipating, Dedication Day. As I mentioned above, the dedication of the new memorial was to take place on this day. By 08:30 we were up and had breakfast, and dressed for the event. While still inside at the table I looked out and spotted Carl Wouters arriving with his family, his girlfriend, Sofie, and her family from the town of Boom, Belgium (near Antwerp). Carl is a young man who I have been corresponding with for quite some time now. His interest lies in the Battle of the Bulge and the 106th Division in particular. He has established an excellent website dedicated to our division. They all came in to the dining room and we had a grand time becoming acquainted. Carl had made two 589/A Battery guidons and presented them to John Gatens and me. Mine spent time that evening on the wall of the dining room during the banquet. It now hangs in my "war room." This was a very thoughtful gift. We thank you again Carl.

--Carl Wouters in GI jacket, Gatens says, "There I was ........"

--Rosemary and Pete Schreiber with Bernadette at the new monument-----

Carl Wouters is deeply involved in the history of WW II in Belgium and has established a website honoring the 106th Infantry Division.  By 10:30 the crowd had begun to assemble so we went outside and were immediately drawing attention. There were many people we knew and some we had corresponded with, but not met. Of course this was Peter Schreiber's event so even though John and I had honored positions we tried to stay in the background. It didn't work very well as somebody was always pushing us forward.

There was a group of Belgian re-enactors there with several WW II vehicles. We posed with them and, except for the language barrier, got along real well. These folks keep the memories of WW II alive. There was media people there making photos and videos of the event and that evening we found ourselves on the website of the Ardennes Gazette. The next day it was all in print when the magazine and newspapers were published.

When the ceremony ended with the unveiling of the monument and attendant speeches, we were treated to a reception in a very large tented structure set up by the Commune of Vielsalm. Hors d'oeuvres and drinks were provided and the tent was packed with people, elbow to elbow. Both John and I went hungry as we were occupied with signing programs, one after the other. Somebody put a glass of wine in our hands and we had to have somebody else hold it while we autographed their programs. (Later Dave told us that we looked like a couple of Rock Stars.)

At 4PM the invited guests were brought into the Auberge dining room for sit-down event. A delightful dinner was served honoring the veterans. There was the usual introduction of honored guests, short speeches by Christian Kraft, and Andre' Hubert. Peter Schreiber was introduced and delivered an exceptionally nice tribute to the veterans who fought the battle of the crossroads and he related the experience of his father who had been wounded and made a prisoner by the Germans at the time.

Also arriving at the Auberge was a couple from The Netherlands, Eddy and Coletta Reidek. We had only corresponded up until this time. This couple has adopted the grave of Lt. Francis O'Toole, 589/A Battery, in Margraten Military Cemetery, and they decorate it with flowers regularly. This not an unusual thing to happen in Holland, Belgium, Luxembourg, and France. The graves of American Soldiers fallen in battle are adopted by local civilians and honored, especially on holidays, with ceremonies and speeches of remembrance for their sacrifice.

Also visiting with us that evening was our Belgian friends Nathalie and Pascal Hanout who are avidly interested in the Battle of the Bulge. It was a very busy day, to say the least.

Sunday 30 Sept 2007

In the morning we decided to travel to the American Military Cemetery at Margraten, The Netherlands. Distances in the area known as Benelux are not that great when compared to the U. S. A. so it did not take us long to get there. The area is very flat, as in most of Holland. They say that if you stand on a chair at one border you can see all the way over to the other side. The fact that one of our 589/A Battery officers, Lt. Francis O'Toole, is buried there gave us the initiative to make the trip. On arrival we entered the office of the Superintendent and acquired the location of the grave. Of course, after a bit of conversation with him we found that we knew some of the same people. It is a small world indeed. We first went to the grave of O'Toole and found that flowers were there, left the day before by Eddy and Coletta Reidek, Netherlanders who have adopted this grave. While walking the cemetery we had the opportunity to talk with several local people (who were English speaking.) They all wanted to know about our connection to WW II and if we had comrades who were buried there. Yes, even after all of the years past, people are interested in the Americans who restored their freedom and drove out the hated Nazis. They have not forgotten.

at the grave of Lt. Francis J. O'Toole in Margraten Cemetery

On leaving the cemetery we drove south again to visit with our friend in Germany, Josef "Jupp" Reusch at the village of Grosslangenfeld. The three Americans were welcomed into the Reusch's home with warm hugs and handshakes. Our first order of business was to inspect the monument that had been installed in the village, dedicated to the men of the 106th Infantry Division and the German unit fighting for possession of the ground during the Battle of the Bulge. Jupp was instrumental in bring this monument to being. (See The Cub vol 61 #2 Jan/Feb/Mar 2005)

Monument in Grosslangenfeld, Germany dedicated to 106th and German soldiers-----

These monuments placed in the area of the battle are tended regularly with cleaning and care and almost always with flowers present. We inspected the monument along with Doug Mitchell, Jupp's son-in-law, and made several 'international' photos with the American and German veterans. Jupp's wife, Mia, had prepared a table of fancy German pastry for us that we certainly did appreciate. The Reusch's daughter, Anita, and Doug were also there to entertain us and see that we got to sample all of the great food and drink. It was a very nice time of friendship. That evening on the way back to the Baraque we stopped for supper at, get this, a Greek restaurant in a little village miles from nowhere.

This was our last night at the Auberge so we packed our bags for traveling and made it to bed fairly early.

Monday 1 Oct. 2007

Bernadette provided the breakfast for us as usual. We were packed and ready to go. The ladies climbed the stairs, grabbed our heavy baggage from our hands, and brought it down those tight stairs for us before we could stop them. (The fact that we are old and weak is starting to sink in.) Bernadette and Esmeralda were there to see us off with parting gifts and that is always the same. We have never departed empty-handed. One might think that we were heading for the gallows. All of us were fighting back the tears. So, before we had to use the Kleenex we loaded the car, said our good-byes, and took off for Luxembourg.

Frank Kieffer in courtyard of castle with a British visitor and two Gis,


Statue of The GI in Clervaux, Luxembourg (Designed by Frank Kieffer) ----

On arrival at Clervaux we met with Frank Kieffer, Camille Kohn, Jean Mielmeister, and a representative of the American Embassy and his Marine Guard at The Statue of The GI. They were there as a welcoming committee and to conduct a ceremony for us, all the while being photographed by the local media. One would think that we were VIPs. After the ceremony we all proceeded to the old castle, where the WW II Museum is, and assembled in the conference room for the "Vin D'honor." Camille Kohn, President of CEBA delivered a very nice speech expressing Luxembourg's appreciation to the Americans for deliverance from the oppression under Nazi rule. When Camille was finished I presented him with a book given to him by our own 106th Division veteran, Alfred Vitali. It was a National Geographic publication devoted to Arlington Military Cemetery.

When the party broke up Frank (the curator) conducted us to his museum for a short visit. The museum is a 'must' for anyone visiting Clervaux. It is housed in a medieval castle, once reduced to ruins during the Battle of the Bulge, but painstakingly restored to its original glory after the end of the war. Frank Kieffer is the consummate collector and has filled it with an unimaginable variety of items concerning the Battle of the Bulge and WW II in general.

Frank Kieffer at display of some the items I have provided for the museum -----

On leaving the old castle we checked into the Hotel Koerner with our baggage and then, along with Frank, drove to his home at Asselborn, about 10km away through the picturesque farmland.

On arrival at Frank's home we were warmly greeted by his wife, Maria, who had already set the table for us. Too much wine and good food simply can't be bad for one. (I always say.)

The Kieffer home is also a repository for some of Frank's personal collections. It is not like the castle of course, but only because there is not as much room. We were treated to the hands-on examination of the items he has stored away in the house. There is loads of neat stuff too numerous to mention here. We left Asselborn about 8:30PM and returned to the hotel in Clervaux for a relatively early bedtime.

Tuesday 2 Oct 2007

After a nice buffet breakfast we checked out of the hotel and hit the road once more. We wanted to check on our trees in the Bois de la Paix (Woods of Peace) in Bizory so that was our first stop. Gatens and I had no trouble finding our trees. They had grown a bit but had not moved from that spot since the last visit. (ha)

Schaffner and Gatens at the trees planted in their honor in
the Bois de la Paix, Bizory-----

While in that area, just north-east of Bastogne city, we stopped at a new
monument dedicated to the 506th PIR (82nd AB Div.) and got to talk with a couple of other visitors from England who were being guided around the battlefield. I think that they were impressed to find some of us old veterans of the battle still on our feet.

We had made arrangements with our good Belgian friend Vince Gerard to visit with him on this day before our departure. Vince maintains a "cabin -in-the-woods" at Carfountain and had invited us to join with him and his mother for a time of R & R and partake of a dinner from his outdoor grill.. Needless to say that we accepted and met him in the village to be guided to the cabin. (I doubt we could have found it on our own.) We spent a most pleasant afternoon there and Vince expertly cooked a variety of items from fish to beef.

Vince Gerard and mother, Anne, with Dave Ford at the "Cabin in the Woods" ----

When the sun neared the horizon we decided that we would have to make our way to the hotel at the Brussels Airport. Vince very graciously volunteered to guide us in his car, and since rain was developing and we were not familiar with the route, it was an easy decision to accept. Upon arrival at the hotel we checked in, dropped our baggage, and went to the lounge to chat with Vince. It was not long before Nick Jonckheere arrived from Oostende to spend some time with us. Nick has also been a part of our Belgian "family" for about ten years. We have known him from his teen age years when he visited the states and stayed with Lil and me. That came about through our mutual interest in aviation. Since then we have stayed in close touch and have seen him transformed into a career in the aviation industry, a home owner, and father of two beautiful little girls. Nick brought along his laptop to show us photos of his family and from his job with a company using helicopters as air-commuters. Both Vince and Nick have become good friends.

We were into bed a bit late that night but the next day was committed for
traveling home and that would involve a long time sitting in one place.

Vince Gerard, John Gatens, John Schaffner, Nick Jonckheere, last night at the hotel at Brussels -----

Wednesday 3 Oct 2007

We were up early, had a quick, easy breakfast at the hotel, boarded the shuttle bus and were off to the airport to catch our flight home. We were air-bourn at 10:30 AM (local time) and on course for a 3,674 mile ride to Newark, NJ. Our arrival and touch down was 15 minutes early at 11:40 AM. We split at the airport with Gatens going to Fair Lawn, and Dave and I boarded the mono-rail shuttle to connect with Amtrak for the train ride to Baltimore. Arline Ford was at the station to meet us on our arrival there and is was just a hop, skip and jump and we were home once again (with all of our dirty laundry and Belgian chocolate.) After every trip I tell myself that it was the last time. If that is the case then I can say that it is regretful, since it means that we will probably not be seeing those wonderful friends again. But time marches on and everything has its day. There are no regrets except that I wish that we could have started it all sooner.

We can never forget our wonderful friends in Belgium, Holland, Luxembourg, and Germany. They treat us most graciously. While the three of us collaborated on this trip concerning when and where, Gatens and Schaffner have to thank Ford for allowing us to tap him for his travel in Europe experience. He has helped us immeasurably with acquiring the transportation, doing the driving, and setting up reservations where we needed them. He knew the ropes. Thanks, Dave.

While composing this article I was informed of sad news from Baraque de Fraiture, Maria Lahaire had passed on Dec 24, 2007 and the funeral was Friday 28 Dec. 2007 from Hebronval, Belgium. Her last public appearance was at the memorial dedication ceremony at the Parker's Crossroads on September 29, 2007. Although very ill at the time, her family made sure that she was present. She attended the ceremony and reception in a wheelchair. She had been gravely ill for a long time with Alsheimers and the complications that go with it. We were privileged to have spent some time with her (and her family and friends) in the nursing home where she was residing while we were visiting in September. Maria, her daughter, Bernadette, and granddaughter, Esmeralda, have treated us as VIPs on each visit. We will miss her. The Auberge has been in the same family since 1880. May it continue for many more generations. The 106th Infantry Division Association was represented at the funeral by a floral arrangement provided by John Gatens 589/A, John Schaffner 589/A, and David Ford, Associate Member.

Received later from Henri Rogister:

"Just few words concerning the funeral service: More of 200 peoples were present for the ceremony. Unfortunately for many of them the church at Fraiture was too little and we stay outside where the weather was with the fog and rain and cold.
Sincerely, Henri

Page last revised 09/10/2016
James D. West