This is a picture of the inauguration of the monument to the 743rd Tank Battalion in Stoumont, Belgium, last December, with the Gast brothers. Their father was a tanker in this battalion from D Day on Omaha Beach until the end of the war. I guided both of them at different times, they became friends.
I am a "Guide Nationale" since 1990, which means I am an official, licensed guide, allowed to guide on sites but also in French Historical Monuments, and National Museums.
I grew up in a village that was part of SWORD BEACH, sector of QUEEN WHITE, where on D DAY landed the 1st Battalion of the South Lancashire Rgt, among which there was Stanley Quirk, a Scotsman my parents welcomed for free at home as he looked for a place to stay when he came back as a veteran for the 40th Anniversary of D DAY. I was 14, and went with him to the British cemetery in my village where his ex-comrades are buried, and he showed me their pictures.
At first, I worked as a guide for big groups of French retired people who were coming to see where their liberators had landed and pay homage to those of them buried in our ground, and I learned so much with them who had lived during World War II and during the German occupation.
Then I worked for the CAEN MEMORIAL for 7 years, a big museum about World War II and the Battle of Normandy, as a Guide for regular visitors and VIPs. in the Museum and on the D DAY sites.
Later, I was a Guide-driver for NORMANDY SIGHTSEEING TOURS, the biggest small size-tours company in the area, but also trained the inexperienced guides joining the team. I transmitted them my passion, they kept studying and became great guides. Many of them are free-lance guides now and I am proud of them.
Now it's my time to become free-lance, but still with the same passion, and great concern of quality.