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Welcome to the online presence of Olivier Glod.

Husband, father, shutterbug, geek, collector, addicted to movies, music and comics, maintaining a keen interest in all things digital at the same time as nurturing a profound respect for beautifully designed and crafted items, Oli is also known to enjoy fine dining and appreciate the occasional uisge beatha.

Happily living in the beautiful town of Echternach, his favourite subjects usually include his son, landscapes, cityscapes, nature and macro, although he has recently acquired a taste for wedding photography and outdoor portraits.

A grim reminder and a celebration of valour


A grim reminder and a celebration of valour

Olivier Glod

First of all, let me start with some apologies. I said this post would be up by last weekend, but in the end I didn't manage to put it online. This has nothing to do with my previous post (i.e. procrastination), but I just felt that my previous processing of the pictures you're about to see didn't manage to convey even a fraction of the emotional roller coaster I experienced the morning I shot them. This having been said, let's dive right in!

Two weeks ago, I finally managed to visit two sites which had been on my to-do list for quite some time: the German Military Cemetery, followed by the Luxembourg American Cemetery and Memorial. Both sites are within a three minutes' drive from each other in Sandweiler.

It was quite early when I arrived at the German Military Cemetery and the only other people present were an elder woman and her grandson. 

The site is secluded, yet easily accessible from the main road, bordering on public hiking and biking ways.

Immediately upon entering through the main gates, I felt a deep sadness wash over me. It's pretty difficult to describe, but I guess it's just one of those things you have to experience for yourself.

Entrance to the German cemetery.

The cemetery itself is rather bleak and reading all of the headstones engraved with the names, rank, birthdate and date of death of so many soldiers aged 17 to 20 knocked the wind right out of me. 

Not all of the fallen were so lucky to be identified, many corpses remain nameless. 

Friedrich-Werner Wüstenhagen shares a grave with an unidentified German soldier, simply referenced as "EIN DEUTSCHER SOLDAT".

I spent about two hours just wandering around and being grateful not to live in those troubled times, this really was a very sobering experience.

Right next to the entry, there's a little room, which acts as a visitor centre. Unfortunately it fits right in: rather desolate, minimal, abandoned would be the first words coming to my mind. 

Inside the visitors room

The site is financed almost exclusively with contributions from members of the "Volksbund Deutsche Kriegsgräberfürsorge e. V." and donors, so it could do with a little bit of your help.

By the time I left the German site, I was quite shaken and considered just driving home, hugging my wife and my son, and coming back another day for the American site.

Am I glad I didn't... 

As aforementioned, you can easily reach the American site by car within three minutes, so I decided to at least have a look at the outside.

This location is also slightly hidden away in the woods between two main roads, but upon arriving at the parking I immediately realised I would go through with my original plan. The first thought that went through my head, seeing the main gates was: "WOW!".

Entrance to the Luxembourg American Cemetery and Memorial

This place couldn't be any more different from the previous one.

Glory, valour and a testament to the many heroic deeds accomplished by the American Forces during WW2, one can't help but be in awe and marvel at the proud display of the beautiful chapel located just behind the gates at a central position, overlooking the brave ones whom have ensured our freedom by making the ultimate sacrifice.

The chapel

This site is maintained by the American Battle Monuments Commission and features a beautiful visitor building.

Inside the visitor building.

Another two hours just flew by, and the cemetery was starting to fill up rather fast with visitors, random tourists and family members alike, all of them flocking towards a specific point of interest at one moment or another: General George S. Patton, Jr.'s grave, which lies pretty much in the centre and overlooks the graves area.

General Patton's Grave

After this final shot, it was time for me to return home to my loved ones, but if you're ever in Luxembourg, this is one experience I can wholeheartedly recommend.

Finally, here's a small, more complete, gallery with my shots from this memorable trip.

Most of the shots were taken with a Fujifilm X100S, but there are a few X-E1 shots with the XF55-200 lens in there as well, while processing was done in Lightroom 5, with a little help from VSCOfilm