Their First attempt
The five pilots’ first attempt to make it to
They moved at night and stayed in hiding during the daytime, going from “safe house” to “safe house” that were offered by the underground resistance. Trouble was that, in the beginning of the war, there were traitors in the chain, hidden Nazis, and you could never be sure when you knocked on someone’s door... And so, in their first attempt, the five pilots made it as far as
They needed to get out of there! And they did! In the most daring manner, that only a bunch of brave young fighter pilots can come up with, and be bold enough to carry out: “They stole the German Camp Commander’s car and drove out the front gate!” That sounds easy but it was crazy dangerous. The sentry at the gate, a stiff, indoctrinated German soldier, upon seeing the approaching Camp Commander’s car, clicked his heels, gave the Nazi salute with his outstretched arm, said “Heil Hitler”, and opened the gate.... If the sentry would have looked inside, and seen the five Dutch pilots, he would have surely machine gunned them down right there!
But before they could even carry this out, they had to overcome one big problem. It was in the middle of winter with severe frost at night, and already at that time, the German Army had all sorts of shortages. One of them that there was no anti-freeze. Our five friends had seen that the
Limped back home....
Somehow they made it back home to
Mom worked hard to help Dad recover, again in hiding.
55 years later, in 1998, Mom (82) and Dad (84) enjoying happier days
To go to the next chapter, please go to the top of this page, in the left hand column and click on: "Second attempt: England!"