(Very rough) English translation

of the 6 September newspaper article from ‘De Gelderlander’…

nijmegen_dg_ny-b04_140906_2_dg_ny-b04r_140906_2

for the non-Dutch speakers amongst us (myself included!), thanks to the kindness of the newspaper’s staff, and to Google Translate…

Crash Missing Plane Commemorated

by Harm Graat

NIJMEGEN – On 25 September, the crash of a plane that has been missing for seventy years is grandly celebrated in Hees, the former village (and now neighborhood) in Nijmegen. A memorial service will take place in St Peter’s Church, a stone’s throw from the place where the unit crashed on 25 September 1944. “It’s about a British bomber, a Mitchell,” said Everard Bakker of Eemnes. “The three occupants and four civilians lost their lives.” It has long been assumed that the crashed aircraft was a Spitfire. There are video recordings of the burning house that was hit. Bakker, who works in defence and does research in his free time, says that in collaboration with other British kin, abundant evidence has been found for his Mitchell theory. “I have previously investigated a Mitchell that was associated with the same 320 Squadron and, after dogfights above Schaarsbergen, crashed in Arnhem South. It was known that shortly afterwards, a second Mitchell was downed. The final puzzle pieces were found two weeks ago in Australian archives. Amongst the crew of the Hees-downed Mitchell was an Australian. Hees is mentioned in his death certificate.” Henk Termeer, historian and member of both the Association Dorpsbelang Hees and the Working Group on War Dead Nijmegen, is convinced by Bakker’s research. “Experts who have viewed the footage of the fire have concluded that even though it is a much larger aircraft than a Spitfire, the question remains: so where did the Spitfire crash then? An eyewitness saw a Spitfire descending but not the impact. The mystery is not completely solved.” September 25 is the first time that the plane crash is officially recognised. This is done, according to Bakker, in the presence of amongst others, the last three remaining living Dutch participants of 320 Squadron, seven British relatives, schoolchildren from Hees, and Mayor Bruls.

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