Here is a short video of Jim Hoel’s return trip to Europe in 2005. Included are pictures from his visit to the shores of the Maas River near Rozenburg, Holland where his plane crashed. Next, a trip to Margraten, Holland, wherre Jim visited the Netherlands American WW 2 Cemetery. He was escorted by his son, Gil and two Dutchmen, John and Dennis Prooi (father and son). John grew up in Rozenburg, the village where Jim’s B26 ditched on May 17, 1943. All ten B26’s were shot down as they made landfall south of Rotterdam. 40 of the 60 airmen lost their lives that morning. Jim swam to shore, was captured by the Germans and spent the remainder of the war as a POW.
John and his son researched where many of Jim’s fallen comrades were buried amongst the 8,302 grave sites of American soldiers. The group went to each of these sites during the visit to pay their respects.