Jim Olsen born 1956. Jim Olsen born 1956


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Jim Olsen born 1956.

  • Jim Olsen born 1956.

  • The Berlin Wall was erected in 1961 by the communist government, to make it impossible for East Germans to leave their country.





Berlin Wall being built – separation.

  • Berlin Wall being built – separation.



Berlin. Bernauer Strasse/Brunnenstrasse View from West to East Berlin.

  • Berlin. Bernauer Strasse/Brunnenstrasse View from West to East Berlin.



Berlin, Checkpoint Charlie View from West to East Berlin, 1961

  • Berlin, Checkpoint Charlie View from West to East Berlin, 1961



Standoff between US and Soviet tanks at Checkpoint Charlie, 1961.

  • Standoff between US and Soviet tanks at Checkpoint Charlie, 1961.



In sixth grade my social studies teacher showed slides of her visit to Berlin.

  • In sixth grade my social studies teacher showed slides of her visit to Berlin.

  • My first encounter with the Berlin Wall.

  • This is what she described.



Berlin, Potsdamer Platz, 60s

  • Berlin, Potsdamer Platz, 60s



Berlin, Potsdamer Platz, 60s

  • Berlin, Potsdamer Platz, 60s



Brandenburg Gate photographed through the barbed wire there, from the West Berlin, April 1963

  • Brandenburg Gate photographed through the barbed wire there, from the West Berlin, April 1963



Checkpoint Charlie Berlin, April 1963

  • Checkpoint Charlie Berlin, April 1963



Berlin, 1963. John F. Kennedy visiting Berlin on June 26, 1963.

  • Berlin, 1963. John F. Kennedy visiting Berlin on June 26, 1963.



JFK gave his famous “Ich bin ein Berliner” speech.

  • JFK gave his famous “Ich bin ein Berliner” speech.

  • http://www.americanrhetoric.com/speeches/jfkberliner.html





In the last phase of the wall's development, the "death strip" between fence and concrete wall.

  • In the last phase of the wall's development, the "death strip" between fence and concrete wall.



East Germans were killed if they tried to escape.

  • East Germans were killed if they tried to escape.



In the summer of 1972 I traveled to Berlin with my family (my second encounter).

  • In the summer of 1972 I traveled to Berlin with my family (my second encounter).

  • This is the sight I saw.



Brandenburg Gate View from West Berlin to East Berlin

  • Brandenburg Gate View from West Berlin to East Berlin



Berliner Mauer, Berlin 1983.

  • Berliner Mauer, Berlin 1983.



In 1985 I took a group of students to Germany (3rd encounter).

  • In 1985 I took a group of students to Germany (3rd encounter).

  • This is what I saw.



United States President Ronald Reagan delivers his famed "Tear Down This Wall" speech at the Berlin Wall in June of 1987, in which he called for Soviet General Secretary Mikhail Gorbachev to tear down the wall.

  • United States President Ronald Reagan delivers his famed "Tear Down This Wall" speech at the Berlin Wall in June of 1987, in which he called for Soviet General Secretary Mikhail Gorbachev to tear down the wall.

  • http://www.americanrhetoric.com/speeches/ronaldreaganbrandenburggate.htm



In 1989 the Berlin Wall came DOWN!!

  • In 1989 the Berlin Wall came DOWN!!



My friend sent be a post card showing people walking under the Brandenburg Gate for the first time since 1961.

  • My friend sent be a post card showing people walking under the Brandenburg Gate for the first time since 1961.

  • My 4th encounter.



In summer 2007 I took my family to Berlin.

  • In summer 2007 I took my family to Berlin.

  • My 5th encounter. It was awesome!



Here we are at the Hard Rock Café, Berlin with my friend, Heinz.

  • Here we are at the Hard Rock Café, Berlin with my friend, Heinz.



They have the line marked where the Wall stood.

  • They have the line marked where the Wall stood.





Potsdamer Platz has been restored.

  • Potsdamer Platz has been restored.

  • They have kept a section of the Wall.



Potsdamer Platz restored.

  • Potsdamer Platz restored.



Potsdamer Platz

  • Potsdamer Platz

  • Sony Center

  • 2007



Checkpoint Charlie today.

  • Checkpoint Charlie today.



Checkpoint Charlie today.

  • Checkpoint Charlie today.



Photo taken of my children with a relic of past communist oppression.

  • Photo taken of my children with a relic of past communist oppression.



Brandenburg Gate, 2007.

  • Brandenburg Gate, 2007.



Here I am, proudly walking under the Brandenburger Gate. Something I did not think I’d be able to do in my lifetime.

  • Here I am, proudly walking under the Brandenburger Gate. Something I did not think I’d be able to do in my lifetime.



I am thankful the Berlin Wall is no more.

  • I am thankful the Berlin Wall is no more.

  • I am thankful for freedom.





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