Joe Crilley

The Island

[The Canal - Continued]

Pictured below is a Setember 24, 2004 newspaper photo showing Opheusden historian Bernhard Florissen standing next to his pride and joy, a 1943 Willy jeep. To the right is the bridge that my Father would cross entering the village of Opheusden. Bernhard was the man who identified the people that saved my Father's life on that Thursday morning after Dutch college student and World War II webbuilder Jeroen C. Koppes sent him questions and material about this October 5, 1944 event. Turns out the two Dutch civilians were Bernhard's cousins, brother and sister, Wim and Dir van den Bosch. Bernhard has sent my family many photos of Opheusden and the deadly battle that killed 275 Americans. Below Bernhard's photo is a October 1944 picture of American paratroopers at the same spot of Bernhard. The railroad station behind the troopers is where Colonel Sink, or Colonel Bob as the men called him, went to direct the battle after he led my Father and other members of the First and Third Platoons of Baker Co./326th AEB to this spot. Colonel Robert Sink was one of the two original commanders from the 101st to survive the war.
Bottom photo from "The Epic of the 101st Airborne"
Opheusden Bridge

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