Remembering the soldiers in Milsbeek and Ottersum
The area around Gennep (very roughly) was the scene of two major action in WW2. Operation Market Garden and Operation Veritable. Both action left scars in the surrounding, both actions left a lot of men in our cemeteries. There are many cemeteries in our area, both Commonwealth ones and German. We feel the need to take care of all the men.
Ook in 2023 herdenken wij ook weer thuis voor diegene die niet bij de of een 4 mei herdenking kan zijn. Het 4 mei comité nodigt jullie uit stil te staan bij deze bijzondere dag.
There are two cemeteries in the Municipality of Gennep, Milsbeek and Ottersum. Both have different histories, both have different numbers of men buried. There are a few things in common. These men should have come home with their families and they are here now. We take care of their graves on special moments. In general there is All-souls day where the Tambourkorps Crescendo take care of the flowers, the remembrance ceremony for Operation Veritable where the Veritable Foundation takes care of the activities and there is our remembrance day on the 4th of May where the whole community visits the Milsbeek War Cemetery for the official remembrance ceremony. And not to forget the candle ceremonie on Chrismast eve.
Over the year many people visit the graves.
Lest we forget!
On the 4th of May 2017 I presented a book remembering all 220 soldiers buried in our municipality. This remembrance book "Tread Softly" is still for sale, online just click the button below.
In Milsbeek there are 210 men buried. all the men are British, but for one Australian. The majority of the men were killed in or in the vincinity of in the municipality. Some of the were killed during Market Garden in Veghel. Another group was killed during the second battle of Arnhem, Operation Anger.
In Ottersum there are 9 men buried. On of them is Dutch and he was killed in France when he tried to escape the regime. The other 8 were killed in the area. Why they stayed in this cemetery and were not reinterred in Milsbeek remains unclear. The graves are mainly taken care of by the local people in Ottersum.
In Gennep there is one Dutch soldier buried. Hans Stiemens was killed defending airport Ypenburg. He is buried next to his parents at the former sanatorium Zonlichtheide.
In Heijen there are two war graves.
After the war it remained dangerous. Hein Ullenbroek stepped on a landmine while clearing the area of Wijhe.
Gerrit Kaak served our country as part of the NBS and died in Hilversum but is now buried in Heijen.
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