Our parishioner, Robert M., recently shared a story that is most worthy of being further shared, with his permission.
He recently drove another elderly parishioner to a doctor appointment. The doctor was of Czech descent. Bob spoke of his involvement in the liberation of the City of Pilsen in the Czech Republic in 1945 (see account below). As he related the story, Bob contracted tuberculosis soon after the liberation, and remained in treatment for some time following this event, still in Europe. He missed hearing about the celebrations that have been held in the years since (see photo of monuments erected in Pilsen).
The doctor related that later this month will be the 75th anniversary of this liberation, and likely the last celebration as few WWII soldiers still survive. In hearing this account, the doctor indicated his willingness to drive Bob to this celebration! After all these years, Bob may have the opportunity to participate in the remembrance of one part of the war he was an eyewitness to! What a blessing for this WWII veteran!
[Czech Republic town still celebrates liberation by U.S. troops during World War II
Editor’s note: This story originally was published in Slovo, a biannual publication of the National Czech & Slovak Museum & Library. It appeared here in the Gazette about five years ago, accessed January 25, 2020.
“On May 6, 1945, U.S. troops with the Third Army division — led by Gen. George Patton — marched into Pilsen, Czechoslovakia, and the surrounding area to liberate the Czech people from Nazi Germany toward the end of World War II.
This area in western Czechoslovakia was the only portion of the country liberated by U.S. troops. And each year at the beginning of May, a Liberation Festival is held — this year marking the 70th anniversary. Thousands of citizens and visitors from around the world will gather in Pilsen to celebrate the momentous occasion.”]
Thanks be to God, Bob was able to make this trip to be part of the celebration of the city of Pilsen, Czechoslovakia at the end of WWII! Accompanying him was his Greatgrandaughter, Teela B.