Our Barge, Odysseus

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Lommel WWII German Cemetery

Part of our bike ride down the Beverlo took us through the town of Lommel and past the WWII German cemetery.

From the introductory plaque, translated into English:

" 'The soldier's graves are the greatest preachers of peace.' (Albert Schweitzer, Nobel Prize laureate)

In the mid-fifties, this graves site was developed by the German War Graves Commission for the fallen of World War II after it was commissioned to do so by the German government...

During the American-English offensive of 1944/45, the American graves service interred the German dead in five cemeteries in Belgium and West Germany, especially in the vicinity of Aachen, in the Hurtgen Forest and the Remagen bridgehead, including one on the Lommeler Heath,

The dead from the other four sites had already been transferred to Lommel in 1946, the site then being handed over to the Belgian authorities.

The Belgian graves service transferred more fallen German soldier to Lommel, in addition 541 German dead from WW I, who were buried elsewhere. With more than 39,100 fallen soldiers, Lommel was the World War II war graves site in western Europe with the largest number of fallen. The site was consecrated on 6th September 1959,...

The dead of this cemetery admonish to peace."

2 notes - The population of Lommel, Belgium is about 40,000.
There are two dead soldiers for every cross.

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