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Joint Act of Commemoration in Scranton

Joint Act of Commemoration in Scranton, © German Consulate General New York

20.02.2020 - Article

Joint Act of Commemoration

This week we were honored to take part in a ceremony in Scranton in memory of WWII airman Staff Sgt. Joseph E. Prokop, marking the 75th anniversary of the aviator’s death. It was recently discovered by researchers in Germany that Sgt. Prokop did not die in an airplane crash as originally thought, but was murdered by the Gestapo after surviving the crash as one of his fellow airman was Jewish. A similar ceremony took place simultaneously in Hanau, Germany, where his bomber was originally shot down. Our colleague Christian Resing held a speech in Scranton that was much appreciated by the participants of the ceremony, especially Prokop’s sister who was finally able to make peace with her brother’s death. The event was a joint act of remembrance and commemoration between two countries, former enemies that managed to become friends sharing mutual respect for one another.

As many of you are aware, just two days after our joint commemoration tragedy struck Hanau. Our thoughts are with the victims and their families.

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