If you want to be heard, say it in Belgium!
In zijn Tour of Belgium bezoekt VS-Ambassadeur Gutman Deinze: aankomst met de Gentse Barge aan het Sint Poppoplein, ritje met de blue bike 'force one', bezoek aan het MUDEL, aan stokerij FILLIERS en officiële ontvangst in het kasteel Ooidonk.
Speech of Mr Vermeulen, Mayor of Deinze:
Mister Ambassador, for this story, I return to a family from Deinze
At the end of the sixteenth century, there was a furious civil war going on in Flanders between Catholics and Protestants. The protestant family Baudart of Deinze fled for the advancing Spanish troops and came via England in to Holland.
Willem Baudart, the later Baudartius, born in Deinze, became one of the most famous preachers and theologians of his time in Holland. He was one of the translators of the Hebrew state bible, a milestone for the Dutch language.
His grandson, the son of his daughter Mary, migrated with Peter Stuyvesant in 1647 to the new world and settled himself at the colony New Amsterdam, later New York.
This William Beekman is a famous name in the history of the United States. He became several times alderman and mayor of New York.
Nowadays there is still a William Beekman street, nearby Brooklyn Bridge.
He and his grandfather Willem Baudartius of Deinze had a lot of important descendants, but the three most import are certainly the presidents Franklin Delano Roosevelt, George Bush junior en senior.
Indeed, migration is from all times and we are proud that three American presidents have a forefather in Deinze.
In October 1918, the First World War was in a his final phase. At the Lys river - very near to the center of Deinze - the 37th American infantry division from Ohio launched a final attack on the enemy shelters between the Lys and the Scheldt river. They had a lot of casualties.
Deinze is a member of an interregional platform, and soon hundred years after the great war, this association wants to pay tribute to these final but important actions of the Americans at the river Lys. So we consider the construction of a landmark or info point and are already working in close collaboration with the members of the American Battle Monuments Commission at the military cemetery in Waregem.
These historical ties with your country are important to us and we will never forget them.