Antwerp, Belgium (2017)
June 2017
River Cruise
5 Countries

Antwerp 1945 - In WWII my Dad Frank Paukstis served on a "Cruiser" the USS Philadelphia
72 years later I "cruised" in the same waters. Dad kept a diary and took carefully selected pictures
When we travel, I try to walk in Dad's footsteps and recreate his photos

July 15, 1945 the USS Philadelphia sailed to Antwerp, Belgium escorting President Truman to the Potsdam conference
where he would meet with Stalin and Churchill. In his diary Dad described how Belgians lined both banks of the river
cheering the ship's arrival and waving to the President standing on deck
June 21, 2017 I took a photo from the same spot except that's our cruise ship (River Rhapsody) not a warship
I was able to find the exact spot because in his diary Dad wrote how he walked through a tunnel under the river.
I found the tunnel and walked in his footsteps. It is 4/10 of a mile long and
accessible by escalators down deep under the river - the longest wooden escalator in the world
Tunnel Statistics
Images of Construction
This "castle-like" structure along the river was actually built as a jail
Now it serves as a resettlement center for immigrants and refugees

The Cathedral
Memorial to workers who built the cathedral
Restaurant having statues from many churches
In 1945 Antwerp (Anvers in French) the main square had weapons of war displayed like this V2 rocket
Today tourists and the flags of countries at peace

Scenes of the city