Vincent Van Gogh and Aerssen

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First and foremost, your father devoted himself to helping the small farmers, then to religious matters.
He particularly protected Aersten, a peasant who had a large family...and much trouble managing the farm lent by your grandfather’s association... Your father never ceased helping him... He even had to oppose his father’s association when the latter threatened to take back the farm... As a child and teenager, you had to share their difficulties...
You became so attached to that man that when you learnt about his coming death, you insisted in “closing his eyes”...
You arrived in Zundert at the crack of dawn, after a three- hour walk... You waited for the family to wake up in the churchyard... Aersten had died the day before. You prayed with them... It was the first time you saw a dead man. This experience would move you deeply... “Zundert, I will always remember that last trip”.