In 2005 my mom, dad and I set out on an adventure 60 years in the making. The reason for our trip was for my mom to visit her brother’s grave in Maastricht, Holland. He had been killed in Germany in WWII and buried at the American Cemetery there.
Our travel agent assured us that if we booked this trip we would be stopping for several hours in Maastricht, and that the Trafalgar Travel Director knew all about our request to visit the military cemetery and would take care of everything.
Upon arrival in Amsterdam we met Paul, our Travel Director. To our dismay, neither he nor Trafalgar had been informed of our request by the travel agent. He explained that the stop in Maastricht was less than two hours and that was not enough time for a trip out to the cemetery.
There we were. Several thousand miles from home on a trip that’s main purpose was enabling mom to finally say goodbye to her brother, after 60 years. We knew this would be her only opportunity, as mom had been diagnosed with late stage colon cancer and was undergoing chemotherapy. Her doctor had encouraged her to take a guided vacation. Friends had recommended Trafalgar and felt she would be very comfortable and get to see everything she wanted to, with maximum comfort – all VERY TRUE!!
I asked Paul about a taxi, bus, anything that could get us to that cemetery during that stop – I would do anything!!
The morning we were going to Maastricht, Paul told us he had planned to have his wife meet him in Maastricht for a visit during our free time. He had not seen her in six weeks due to work schedules. What we didn’t know, was that Paul had asked his wife to bring their GPS and the address to the cemetery with her.
When we arrived, Paul’s wife was waiting there. Paul came up and told us they were going to take us to the cemetery in her car. You have never seen three mouths drop open so quickly – that was our WOW moment, and tears began to flow.
Two wonderful people took their precious one visit together in several weeks and gave it up for my family. Mom got to finally say a proper goodbye to her brother, and I am forever grateful to Trafalgar for hiring such a wonderful, compassionate man.
Mom passed away the following year, but the story of Paul and Trafalgar has been retold hundreds of times.
Our family is forever thankful for the kindness and care shown by a virtual stranger. Mom considered this trip one of the highlights of her life! The people we traveled with were fabulous and we enjoyed every moment with them thoroughly.
Thanks to Paul, we had one of the biggest WOW’s of our lives!!!
Lisa Grubb, Westerville OH