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Monte Cassino anniversary 18th May 2014

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#1 BigRob

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Posted 04 March 2013 - 03:53 AM

My father fought in the Polish 2nd Corps, and was injured at Monte Cassino. For years he said he wanted to take me there and show me around, but died before we "got around to it". I am planning a trip out there in May next year for the 70th anniversary, and would like to know if any of you fine people know of someone, or some organisation that do tours of the battlefield (in English) without being part of a package that won't rip me off completely?
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#2 Tom Canning

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Posted 04 March 2013 - 04:05 AM

Big Rob-

Try Damiano who is a member of the Forum and lives close to Cassino - PM Paul Reed for his address...

Cheers
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#3 Tom Canning

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Posted 04 March 2013 - 04:12 AM

BigRob

Found Damiano's address by e-mail

Damiano Pavvaroni.......removed
http://www.ww2talk.c...rs/damiano.html

he will look after you

Cheers

Edited by Owen, 04 March 2013 - 09:17 AM.
removed email from public view link to profile posted instead

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#4 firefly7

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Posted 04 March 2013 - 09:24 AM

Hi! I have a blog named ww2tourism where I explain how to get to battlefields or ww2 places. I made a post about Montecassino, like a travel guide to visit the place. If I where you I would go on my own because there are some hidden places you're not going to see if you go with a tour. Hope this can help you. If you have any doubts I can answer them.

WW2 Tourism: Complete guide to visit Montecassino
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#5 Ron Goldstein

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Posted 04 March 2013 - 09:37 AM

Firefly

Hi! I have a blog named ww2tourism where I explain how to get to battlefields or ww2 places. I made a post about Montecassino, like a travel guide to visit the place. If I where you I would go on my own because there are some hidden places you're not going to see if you go with a tour. Hope this can help you. If you have any doubts I can answer them.

WW2 Tourism: Complete guide to visit Montecassino


Well done !

Ron
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If I am not for myself, then who will be for me?
And if I am only for myself, what am I?
And if not now, when?
Rabbi Hillel circa 30 BCE


:peepwalla:

 

I was "called-up", as a 19 year old, on the 1st of Oct 1942 and was one of 5 serving brothers, one of whom, Jack, was in RAF Bomber Command and was killed on March 16th 1945.

I served as a Driver/Op (Wireless Operator) with the 49th Light Anti Aircraft Rgt. (78 Div) from Apr 1943 to Dec 1944 (North Africa, Sicily, Italy, Egypt). The Regiment was disbanded in Dec 1944 and I was retrained (in Italy) by the Royal Armoured Corps.

 

Finally, I served as Loader/Op with the 4th Queen's Own Hussars (6th Armd.,78th & 56 Div) from Mar 1945 to Dec 1946 (Italy, Austria, Germany) finishing up as Tech Cpl. for "A" Sqdrn.  I was "De-mobbed" in Apr 1947

http://www.blogger.c...947129038825503


#6 minden1759

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Posted 04 March 2013 - 01:59 PM

BigRob.

I run studies to Cassino. I have not set the dates for 2014 yet.

Regards

FdeP
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#7 minden1759

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Posted 04 March 2013 - 02:05 PM

BigRob.

I agree with firefly that going on your own is often the best way to see a battlefield but that is conditional on you having studied the ground and the events in great detail before setting off.

If you do not have time to do that then a small group is best but you need to ensure that the tour is not just a series of stops along the way in order to look at the sights. That is pretty mindless.

Regards

FdeP
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#8 Rysia

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Posted 21 June 2013 - 02:22 PM

Hi Big Rob,

 

My dad fought in the 2nd Corp too. We go every five years to commemorate the battle and travel with a group of family and friends. We have a travel agent in Toronto who arranges a tour that begins in Rome and maybe you would be interested in joining the group. The group will visit Montecassino and stay for the ceremony at the Polish Cemetery on May 18th. 

 

Rysia


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#9 minden1759

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Posted 21 June 2013 - 04:56 PM

Big Rob.

I have now set the dates and produced the programme for the 16-19 May 14 study to Monte Cassino. part of the cunning plan includes being on Point 593 at 1020 on 18 May 14 - 70 years to the minute that the Podolski Lancers occupied the monastery.

Get in touch if you would like to see the programme.

Regards

FdeP
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#10 Yarn2

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Posted 18 September 2013 - 12:14 PM

Hello FdeP.... and others.....I would like to see your programme for this important date if that is ok ....My brothers and i are planning to commemorate my Grandfather who with the DCLI fought in the 4th and final battle at Cassino....and then travel the route the 4th took until his capture near Forli in the north east of Italy 5 months later....So all the inforrmation and help to plan this visit is very much appriciated

Regards  


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#11 minden1759

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Posted 18 September 2013 - 12:54 PM

Yarn2.

Whilst I am running a study on 16-19 May 14, the highpoint of that event is being on Point 593 when the Poles finally occupied the Monastery at 1020 on 18 May 44. The programme that I have written has the group on Point 593 at 1020 on 18 May 14 - exactly 70 years to the minute.

The event that I recommend to you is an earlier one that I am running 11-14 May 14. This has Amazon Bridge as its focus and, if you were not aware, 10 Infantry Brigade, of which 2 DCLI were part, had the responsibility of establishing the bridgehead and securing it for the Engineers to build it. If you were not aware, 2 DCLI had two tasks on the night of 11-12 May 44 - providing the boat crews for the other two Battalions to get across and a Coy, in this case D Coy, to conduct a diversionary attack further down river. This event will be at the bridge site at 0530 on 13 May 14 - exactly 70 years to the minute that the bridge opened for business - after many setbacks and challenges.

If you are interested in joining the 11-14 May 14 group, do get in touch.

 

Regards

 

FdeP


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#12 Paul Reed

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Posted 18 September 2013 - 01:34 PM

Details of the Monte Cassino Anniversary are online at: www.cassino70.com

 

Like others here I am also taking groups to Cassino next May, in this case with Leger Holidays. Feel free to PM if you require details.

 

There is a guide to visiting the battlefields on my website: www.ww2battlefields.com


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#13 Oldman

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Posted 19 September 2013 - 07:19 AM

Thanks for the heads up

 

Made the 60 anniversary, watched the Polish veterans remembering those who paid the supreme price then march up the hill to  the abbey,

Spent the afternoon on the ridge and point 593


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"Let us cross over the river and rest under the shade of the trees"


#14 Chrislouis

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Posted 02 October 2013 - 04:23 PM

As a son of a Polish veteran, I attended the 60th anniversary of the final battle of Monte Cassino in his place. My farther who died of lung cancer in 1986 never had the chance to attend a commemoration of the battle. As a child my farther never at all spoke of his wartime experiences. I suppose this was because the memories of these times were too distressing for him. I only know that he fought at the battle from my English mother. I was therefore quite shocked to discover the truth of the very extreme hardships the Polish troops had to endure. From their protracted journey from captivity in Russia to the fight firstly in North Africa and then to the Italian campaign.
Travelling alone I made my own journey arrangements from Bristol England. This allowed me full freedom to explore this WW2 mountain battlefield. I took a taxi to the Polish cemetery, to attend the formal ceremony held here. I later visited the reconstructed abbey and then walked down the winding road to the town below. This walk certainly did open my eyes to the truly rugged nature of the terrain that any fighting troops would have to overcome, below the towering edifice of the abbey structure and also of the hill tops above. I was moved to write a poem on my return to England, which I have not shared with anyone, but feel here obliged to do so her.  I attach the poem here below:-
 
ELEVATED PLACE
 
Upon high, sentinels oversee ad infinitum,
all the land laying free beneath them.
From a place below the shadows cast by massive hallowed walls.
Rooted in faith and history as much as to the ancient weathered rock.
From this sacred ground, none can ever wrest dominion.
Here stands the arena of this much contended realm.
 
It is upon such a field with the seed of freedom borne forth,
that the brave unrelenting soul tills the dark earth.
So it was for this high ground, this gate on to a long fallow soil,
that many toiled honourably and gave their all.
This their victory summit, incontestable ad infinitum.

 


Pay the toll, pay the toll.  Paid the levy.
 
From this lofty mount a host gives testimony, of the tortured passage
upon the road of liberty.
From each promontory pulpit and stony ravine, cardinals rise
to herald the season of their assent.
Rock invested with ruddy apparel, proclaims not only of natures restored
sovereignty here, but also the story of the hard won peace.
 
Upon high, sentinels keep silent sentry ad infinitum,
of the freed ground encompassing them.
At the site of a Benedictine monastery.
At a elevated place.....named Monte Cassino.
 
 
-(hard by you will discover hill Five Nine Three).
 

In memory of the indomitable spirit of the Polish soldiers whom fought and gave their lives in the final bloody battle at Monte Cassino in May 1944. Our thanks to their enduring faith in the eventual freedoms to follow.   -Christopher Louis Zalewski
 
 
 


Edited by Chrislouis, 05 May 2014 - 06:57 PM.

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#15 Oldman

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Posted 03 October 2013 - 07:13 AM

Chrislouis

                 Thank you for sharing your poetry, it brings a new light to the Abbey and its hills,


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"Let us cross over the river and rest under the shade of the trees"


#16 romanbear

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Posted 14 March 2014 - 01:21 PM

Hi guys

I'm trying to find an official program for 18.05.2014 celebration of 70th anniversary but having a huge trouble with it. I've checked websites like www.cassino70.com but could not find anything about the may day even there.
Maybe you have a link that you can share with me, that would be much appreciated.
We are the "Polish Youth Association -Patriae Fidelis" from UK and planning to go there that weekend and pay our respect to the fallen heroes.

Many Thanks Guys :)
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#17 Ron Goldstein

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Posted 14 March 2014 - 03:57 PM


Cassino was never my happiest wartime experience, but having returned there once to show my respects, I will not be attending the 70th year commemoration services.
http://www.bbc.co.uk.../a4062386.shtml

I do however offer all who are fortunate enough to make the pilgrimage my heartiest appreciation of their efforts.

Sincerely

Ron

Edited by Ron Goldstein, 14 March 2014 - 04:04 PM.

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If I am not for myself, then who will be for me?
And if I am only for myself, what am I?
And if not now, when?
Rabbi Hillel circa 30 BCE


:peepwalla:

 

I was "called-up", as a 19 year old, on the 1st of Oct 1942 and was one of 5 serving brothers, one of whom, Jack, was in RAF Bomber Command and was killed on March 16th 1945.

I served as a Driver/Op (Wireless Operator) with the 49th Light Anti Aircraft Rgt. (78 Div) from Apr 1943 to Dec 1944 (North Africa, Sicily, Italy, Egypt). The Regiment was disbanded in Dec 1944 and I was retrained (in Italy) by the Royal Armoured Corps.

 

Finally, I served as Loader/Op with the 4th Queen's Own Hussars (6th Armd.,78th & 56 Div) from Mar 1945 to Dec 1946 (Italy, Austria, Germany) finishing up as Tech Cpl. for "A" Sqdrn.  I was "De-mobbed" in Apr 1947

http://www.blogger.c...947129038825503


#18 4jonboy

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Posted 14 March 2014 - 04:31 PM

Hi guys

I'm trying to find an official program for 18.05.2014 celebration of 70th anniversary but having a huge trouble with it. I've checked websites like www.cassino70.com but could not find anything about the may day even there.
Maybe you have a link that you can share with me, that would be much appreciated.
We are the "Polish Youth Association -Patriae Fidelis" from UK and planning to go there that weekend and pay our respect to the fallen heroes.

Many Thanks Guys :)

 

On Sunday 18th May there is a ceremony at the Polish War Cemetery in the morning. I am sorry I don't know what exact time it is.

In the afternoon there is a New Zealand ceremony at Cassino War Cemetery.

 

Edit: I have seen a website: gustavline.it (the link seems to be broken at the moment) but it does say the ceremony is at 9.30 am

 

Lesley


Edited by 4jonboy, 14 March 2014 - 06:36 PM.

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Very proud daughter of a 56 Recce.
My father served with the British 78th Infantry (Battleaxe) Division in North Africa, Sicily and Italy
He was one of the "D-Day Dodgers"


#19 4jonboy

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Posted 14 March 2014 - 06:54 PM

I have sent a private message to Paul Reed who is a member on here. I think he will be the battlefield guide on the Leger trip to Italy in May and he may know the time the ceremony takes place.

 

Lesley


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Very proud daughter of a 56 Recce.
My father served with the British 78th Infantry (Battleaxe) Division in North Africa, Sicily and Italy
He was one of the "D-Day Dodgers"


#20 romanbear

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Posted 15 March 2014 - 04:37 PM

Thanks Lesley, you are very helpful, I'll try to contact Polish embassy in Rome, they should have exact info about ceremony.

Roman
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#21 Damiano

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Posted 16 March 2014 - 09:26 AM

Hi to everyone, 

 

Tom and Ron it is a pleasure to hear from you, I hope you are well! 

 

BigRob, I hope to meet you in May, you are very welcome. The most important Polish ceremony is at the Military Polish Cemetery in Montecassino on May, 18th but the same day other minor Polish ceremonies will be celebrated in the same area. Currently they still have to be defined and  formalized. 

 

You can find the official program also on our web site www.gustavline.it at this page; as Association we are involved in the arranging with some events which we are developing.  We will update the program as soon as we receive official communications. 

 

If you have any particular need do not hesitate to contact me, you are welcome. 

 

With all the Best Regards. 

 

Damiano Parravano 


Edited by Damiano, 16 March 2014 - 12:57 PM.

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www.gustavline.it

#22 Tom Canning

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Posted 16 March 2014 - 01:42 PM

Damiano

Also good to hear from you once more - thought I might make it to be with you in May - but the Doctor has ruled against it

so I shall be remembering my time at Prezenzano waiting to move up into the Valley and the gigantic traffic Jams of those days -

it was an hectic time as we paused at Fresinone - then handed over to the 6th South African Armoured Div at Agnani…

very best regards
Tom
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#23 Damiano

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Posted 16 March 2014 - 05:27 PM

Tom, 
 
thank you as always for your kind words. It's a pity that you will not come to the Liri Valley for the Ceremonies. I really hope to meet someone who served in  your division. 
 
Best
 
Damiano

Edited by Damiano, 16 March 2014 - 07:21 PM.

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www.gustavline.it

#24 Tom Canning

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Posted 16 March 2014 - 10:51 PM

Damiano
Notwithstanding my absence - I have asked Lesley Littlewood to ensure that she meets you and passes on my regards - and buy

the coffee - Lesley( jonboy) will be with Paul's party…best regards
Tom
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#25 bexley84

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Posted 17 March 2014 - 05:24 PM

Damiano, Tom,

 

good stuff..

 

I'm planning on joining Lesley for a coffee too at some point during the week....

 

best


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#26 4jonboy

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Posted 17 March 2014 - 06:05 PM

Is that two coffees I'm paying for now? :wink:

This trip is getting expensive before I even go

 

Lesley


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Very proud daughter of a 56 Recce.
My father served with the British 78th Infantry (Battleaxe) Division in North Africa, Sicily and Italy
He was one of the "D-Day Dodgers"


#27 bexley84

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Posted 17 March 2014 - 06:10 PM

Did I say just one coffee? Budget for my entourage as well...


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#28 Tom Canning

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Posted 17 March 2014 - 06:11 PM

Richard
exactly why I wanted to be there for the celebrations and to meet with Daminano - Paul - Lesley - yourself and probably many

other forum members…since we don't have any battlefields to visit here in B.C. - but the mountains are very similar to the Appenines

Cheers
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#29 Tom Canning

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Posted 17 March 2014 - 06:22 PM

Lesley

Don't worry about the coffee money - pay in Lira's - it won't sound so bad…or like my late wife who asked the fruit seller

pointing to an apple "quanta costa qui" - he told her and she - typically Italian turned up her hand and with a shrug said "EH"

Cheers
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#30 bexley84

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Posted 17 March 2014 - 06:22 PM

Tom,

 

Time to invent time travel - a la S Trek....that would be truly excellent.

 

Day time in the Liri, back tucked up at night in British Columbia...

 

beam me up...


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