GCU students and faculty arrived at Ypres, Belgium. We were welcomed by our guide, Miranda, an Italian fluent in several languages. Our first stop was the Flanders Field Museum, among the top World War I museums in the world. The museum’s exhibits highlighted the experiences , trauma , and consequences of the war. We also climbed the museum tower, 200 steps, which provided a stunning view of the region.
GCU senior, Rebecca , observed, “The museum is rather interesting. I was really surprised seeing some of the photos and seeing how devastating some of the photos showed. They were very striking and impressionable and it helped me understand how daunting the First World War was. My favorite part of the museum was the 200 step climb to the top. Though it was really tiring it was worth it seeing the view at the top of the building. It was amazing seeing the city from that angle and I will never forget that.”
After the museum we explored Ypres. At 7pm we went to the Menin Gate to attend the Last Post memorial ceremony. The ceremony occurs every evening to remember and commemorate the 54,000 soldiers who died in the battle of Ypres. The ceremony has been held every night since 1927, with the exception of World War II when the Nazis occupies Ypres. We were impressed with the sacrifice of the soldiers and how they were honored in this manner. This left us with a better understanding of the enormous sacrifice of the war and its victims.