German soldiers who were held in Iowa as prisoners of war during World War Two are returning to Iowa this month — for a vacation. Fifteen former P-O-Ws, some with their wives, children and grandkids, will visit the areas of Iowa where they were held captive decades ago. Iowa historian Michael Luick-Thrams is helping organize the gathering through a group called “Traces.” He says the trip will include a reunion between the German ex-POWs and a former American guard, who now lives in Cedar Rapids.He says he’s a little anxious about the reunion, but says after 60 years all hard feelings should be gone. He says they were really not enemies of each other, but enemies of the German government.The Germans are arriving in several groups and most will be here starting September 22nd. Luick-Thrams details a few of the trip’s highlights.The Germans will be touring what’s left of P-O-W camps near Janesville, Muscatine and in Charles City. They’ll also visit Algona where several of the P-O-W’s built a Nativity Scene that’s been well preserved and is still displayed during the holidays. For more information on the trip, surf to “www.traces.org”.
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