Ellen Johnson / CWT Vacations / Virtuoso / June, 2013

 Andre -
Presume Carlson Travel has forwarded our summary feedback on the Decouvertes planned trip to Paris and Normandy. However, I should like to provide a special note to you directly.
As we indicated, the trip exceeded our expectations. However, we wish to a express a special note of appreciation in reference to our tour guide in Normandy -- Ms. Karine Poullard. During our conference call, you had assured me that your representative would be fully qualified to track the 146th ECB, and thus my father's specific Gap Assault Team's positioning and movement on Omaha Beach. Based on our initial conversation with Karine upon our arrival in Bayeux, we immediately felt confident that the objectives of our visit would be accomplished in a very professional manner.
It became readily self-evident that Karine had conducted special research and travel in advance of out visit.  Her experience proved invaluable in positioning us at the critical locations with optimal timing. The sense that I was able to stand in my father's footsteps on the sands of the DOG WHITE sector, will forever hold a place in my memory. Furthermore, our tour of the American Military Cemetery was extremely moving. Karine knew to arrive early and thus we had the cemetery to ourselves, in a sense, that morning. I was especially moved in that Karine had located the soldiers that had been in my father's landing craft, and who had been killed in action on Jun 6. It was tearful for me to stand at their graves.
Following other points of interest associated with the D-Day landings, I was more than surprised to discover that Karine intended to track my father's Combat Engineer Battalion through hedgerow country  to Saint-Lo. That drive fully demonstrated the challenges faced by American forces and 44 days of combat to break through the German defenses. In fact, Karine introduced us to an older man in St Lo who had witnessed the American assault and capture of St Lo when he was age 14. He was moved by a picture of my father and others taken nearby in 1944. He remembers the American Soldiers in uniform, but those who he has met over the years are older civilians -- no longer those men he remembers. He told us that an American doctor had saved the life of his brother, who had been born shortly before and was dying due to a stomach disorder. Those moments we're especially memorable for my wife and myself.
In summary, as a Washington D.C. bureaucrat over the decades, I consider myself to be a good judge of character. Karine is an intelligent and well-spoken young lady. She relates well to her customers and possesses a pleasant demeanor, as well as genuine interest in tailoring her visitors' interests and corresponding itinerary. I would place confidence in her responsibility to deal with all levels of travelers. 
Regards
Larry and Sandra Croon
Clifton, Virginia
USA