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January 6-8, 2023

New Year's Reunion

Prague. It was in the picturesque Czech capital that our next Christmas & New Year's reunion was held. Our association, with a full squad of 10 members and one special guest, gathered to recap the 2022 activities and spend time together visiting historical sites and sharing a meal. 


Our theme was the 109th Evacuation Hospital, which returned to the United States on Christmas Day, December 25, 1945, after spending more than a year serving overseas, including in Czechoslovakia. Our special guest, who came all the way from Germany, was John Fremont Benton, grandson of Elvin LeRoy Benton, who served as a medical technician at the 109th Evacuation Hospital.


We devoted Friday evening to recapitulation and organizational matters. We also welcomed into our ranks a new member, Carole (2nd Lt. Fahrenwald), who successfully completed her one-year recruit period. Thus, our team was expanded by the first member from France.


We started Saturday, already dressed in uniforms, with a very interesting tour of Prague, prepared by our Bára (2nd Lt. Limp). Our route included sites related to World War II, mainly Operation Anthropoid and the Prague Uprising. We couldn’t miss some popular tourist attractions in Prague, such as the Charles Bridge and the Old Town Square with the famous astronomical clock. On our way we met many people who inquired about our uniforms. We were happy to have the opportunity to spread the word about the Army Nurse Corps, even during a private meeting like this one.


After returning to the hotel, it was time for our guest's presentation. John told us about the story of his grandfather, who, as a conscientious objector, was assigned to serve in a hospital (sounds familiar?). The stories from nearby Pilsen were especially close to our hearts. During the presentation we also had the opportunity to examine some artifacts: the hospital's yearbook, original photos taken by Elvin Benton and his camera. You will be able to learn more about his service and the 109th Evacuation Hospital at this year's Liberation Festival in Pilsen.


After the presentation, it was time for our Christmas dinner. This year, our table was dominated by period decorations and American Christmas dishes cooked by us based on original recipes from the 1940s. All of this was possible thanks to the extraordinary culinary skills of Štěpánka (2nd Lt. Hill). We ended the evening by unwrapping gifts from Secret Santa.


Take a look at the photos from our meeting!


Special thanks to John Fremont Benton.

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