The memorial serves as a reminder of this history, telling the story both of those who lost their lives as a result of these conflicts and those who were forced to fight or flee. Many Alsatians were conscripted into the German army during World War II and forced to fight against what they considered their homeland as refusing to fight had serious consequences. These soldiers are often referred to as the malgre-nous or soldiers "despite ourselves."
After Shirmeck, the group headed to Obernai, a mid-sized city in Alsace with a picturesque centre ville. Students had free time to eat lunch and to complete their last souvenir shopping. On our way back from Obernai, we visited Pain d'Epice, a local gingerbread store. Finally, the evening closed with a pot luck and a chance for students and their French families to gather one last time. Students headed home to pack for our early morning departure tomorrow.
Au revoir, Alsace!