All the fallen resistance people in Limburg
Joseph Hubertus (Sef) van Megen became a teacher in Grashoek near Helden in 1935 and then in Broekhuizen from 1937. He was beloved by the children. From 1941 he helped prisoners of war, Allied pilots and Jews to go into hiding or on their way to France, with clothes and crossing the Meuse in rowboats. In the villages of Broekhuizen and Broekhuizenvorst he founded the L.O. in collaboration with A. Reijnders and P.A.J. Peeters. (Cammaert VIb p. 595) and he was a co-founder of the illegal magazine "Voor de Vrijheid" (For Freedom).
In August 1943, the police officers Aarts and Snellen were arrested in Venlo for helping Jews (Cammaert V, p. 430). On Aug. 19, 1943, Sef van Megen was arrested at his parents’ as was his friend Lambert Meijers, who hided there and forged ID cards for the Jews. Meijers was arrested a total of five times, but escaped each time.
Van Megen was sentenced first to five years in prison and then to death on July 17, 1944. Towards the end of the war, the director of the prison where he was imprisoned received orders to kill all foreigners (400). He refused. Then they were sent on a death march. He managed to hide in a barn with two other Dutchmen, but they were betrayed by a farmer, killed by the SS, and buried on the spot by the side of the road.
After the war, they were buried in the Dohnsen cemetery as “three unknown Dutchmen.” His friend Lambert Meijers (see above) made sure that he was reburied in Broekhuizen on March 14, 1946.
Posthumously awarded the Bronzen Leeuw (Bronze Lion) and the Verzetsherdenkingskruis (Resistance Memorial Cross). The Sef van Megenstraat in Broekhuizen is named after him and the Van Megenstraat in his birthplace Leunen.
Interview on Sef van Megen with Hay Reintjes in Broekhuizen on April 26, 2013
Herinneringen aan oom Sef van Megen (Memories of Uncle Sef van Megen).