To the Editor,
In the Taber Times From the Past section, it mentions “On this Day, 1945: WWII: Neuengamme concentration camp near Hamburg is liberated by the British Army”. This brings sad memories for many, including for our family. Our 20-year-old cousin, Marinus, refused to work for the Nazis, went into hiding, but was caught by them and taken to camp Neuengamme where he died due to
cruel work and starvation.
The Dutch underground organizations found many places for young men who refused to work for the Nazis. Places mostly with families who took the risk and lovingly took care of the Onderduikers (young men in hiding). Our family; mom, dad, and seven of us children, on a small farm, also had one Onderduiker, a city man named Leo, who was a watchmaker by trade. He became one of the family for some time and kept busy with different things to do. The Dutch underground organizations had a good warning system. In the case of our cousin Marinus, he was with a very nice family, but was caught and taken to the concentration camp. Yes, he died as many did for our freedom. Lest we forget, many brave families took the risk and took many young men in.
They practised the command, love God and your neighbour as yourself. If we as human beings could all practice that rule, we would have a totally different world today.
– Hans Visser