Case File # 7             

Case Title: Dutch Partisan Killed In Action

Subject: Retreating Wehrmacht soldiers shoot Dutch Resistance Fighter Van Den Boogaard on guard duty at Post Office.

Date: September 18th, 1944

Location: Eindhoven, Holland

 

Introduction: Understanding the importance of the Post Office building in the center of Eindhoven, housing the regional telephone exchange, members of the Partisan Organization put guards at the doors. Meanwhile, inside, telephone operator Joke Lathouwers established contact between elements of the British 30th Corps South of Eindhoven and officers of the 101st Airborne Division in Son.

 

The Story: The local Resistance organization in Eindhoven, The PAN, or Partizanen Actie Nederland, had already lost one of its members in combat earlier on the 18th of September 1944. On Woenselse Straat, 26 years old grocery store assistant Adri Luykx was shot by accident by American paratroopers. Luykx had just smashed a window with his German made rifle and stepped into a house where German soldiers were suspected. Too late, the airborne soldiers recognized Adri's white PAN brassard.

 

Following this incident, American paratroopers were in the Northern suburbs, working their way toward the center of Eindhoven. With sentries at the doors and riflemen at the upstairs windows, the Post Office was well under guard and in secure hands of the Dutch resistance. Suddenly a truckload of German soldiers drove by the building.

 

The same witness who was our source in Case File's # 5 and 8, mr. Theo Bayens of Eindhoven, 18 years old at the time, explained us that he was told the truck came from Kleine Berg and drove into Vrij Straat.

One of the occupants saw 23 year old Partisan Theo Van Den Bogaard from the city of 's-Hertogenbosch inside the building. To eliminate the risk of Theo throwing one of his potato masher hand grenades from the second floor window into the bed of the truck, the Germans opened fire. Theo sustained a lethal gun shot wound to the head and died.

(click on the images to enlarge)

Eindhoven, late 1930's

The Post Office and Telephone Exchange at the corner of Keizers Gracht and Vrij Straat.

Eindhoven, September 18th, 1944

A Dutch Military Policeman, back in his uniform knowing that his liberation from German occupation is near, stands guard at the Post Office. Behind him is PAN-member Theo Van Den Boogaard who would be killed shortly after this photograph was taken.

Today, the building's ground floor has been rebuilt into a shopping passage.

 

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