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British WWII bomber gunner visits Oene plane crash site

Sixty-fifth anniversary remembered

Tags: Excerpts from the Windmill

OENE, the Netherlands - Two local historians have touched the hearts of aging WWII Air Force veterans with their efforts to document a nearly forgotten RAF Lancaster bomber crash in a book and help erect a memorial for the men of the hapless plane.

The Lancaster came down on June 22, 1944, in the vicinity of Oene, a centuries-old village on the Eastern rim of the central Dutch region known as the Veluwe. Of the eight-men crew, two lost their lives in the crash, three were captured as POWs while three others were helped by the resistance. Of these, two made it to freedom. One crewmember was betrayed, caught and executed by the Germans.

On the 65th anniversary date of the crash, family members of the airmen who perished as well as Mike Jackson, the chairman of the Lincoln Air Gunners Association in Lincoln, UK, himself a veteran of the WWII aerial war with Germany, joined Teunis Nooteboom and Jan Kiesbrink, along with local dignitaries, to unveil a memorial at the crash site.


The book’s authors were children at the time of the crash and at one time high school friends. Although they no longer live in the village, much of their efforts have focused on it in recent years when they joined forces on the project. This resulted in the book, Angst en Spanning rond Oene.

Jackson and the family of the air men also paid a visit to the monument near ‘s Heeren Loo, formerly known as Groot Schuijlenburg in Apeldoorn. This monument honours the memory of some members of the resistance and of two crewmembers of the Oene Lancaster. As a result of the betrayal one man named Kenneth Ingram, who was arrested by the Gestapo at his hiding place in Apeldoorn, was executed together with the other members of the resistance group on October 2nd, 1944.

Jackson laid flowers at the memorial and on Ingram’s grave at the Heidehof Cemetery in Ugchelen.