Netwerk Bongaerts
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Limburg 1940-1945,
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1940-1945. The resistance in the dutch province of Limburg


Netwerk Bongaerts

Charles Bongaerts

The Network Bongaerts was more than just the group of firefighters and members of the OD with whom Charles Bongaerts worked on a daily basis. It began, as with all early resistance groups, with help for prisoners of war who had fled Germany. Later, other refugees such as Jews came in as well. Bongaerts was one of the founders of the Ordedienst in the eastern coalmining district. He built an active resistance group within the OD and the fire department, of which he was the commander. They planned and carried out various acts of sabotage, especially in the mines where some members of the group worked, such as Harrie Tobben (mine police). The refugees were transported by the ambulance of the fire department and by the cab of E. Heinen from Heerlen. At one point their truck broke down on the way with three Allied "pilots" on board. They stopped a German army convoy to have it repaired. (Biography of Jo Bongaerts) The sole survivor of an Allied plane crash, Bongaerts was seriously injured, put into a firefighter’s uniform and taken past the Germans to the hospital in Heerlen, where he came under the care of surgeon Karel van Berckel.
Bongaerts’ people brought the refugees to, among others, the Group Dresen in Maastricht, who sent them to, among others, the Gruppe Erkens, from whom they were taken across the Belgian border. They also had connections with Pater Beatus, who in turn had connections to the southern edge of Limburg.
Bongaerts and Tobben coordinated where the refugees were to be picked up and brought to. This could be anywhere in the province, but also in North Brabant, Nijmegen, and even Apeldoorn. As of June 1943, the Limburg lines were all connected to the Belgian branches of the Comet line to Spain (see Section II.2.).
The widely ramified England game was also the undoing of Bongaerts’ network.

The fallen resistance people in Limburg

Netwerk Bongaerts – 5 pers.

Charles Marie Hubert Joseph
∗ 1909-08-07
† 1944-11-23
KZ Ladelund, KZ Neuengamme
- Underground Press - Police - Ordedienst (O.D.) - Netwerk Bongaerts - Initial resistance - Heerlen -

Married to Trees (Theresa) Dahmen. In 1940 Charles was a reserve officer in the Dutch army and during the five day battle of the Netherlands he fought on the so called “Grebbenberg Line”, that …

wall: left, row 16-01
Adèle Jan Gerard
∗ 1889-02-25
† 1945-03-29
KZ Allach, Dachau
- Initial resistance - Netwerk Bongaerts - Aid to Jews - Oirsbeek -

At the request of Rector Voesten from Heerlen, the municipal secretary A.J.G. Fleischeuer from Oirsbeek helped Jews. Voesten probably belonged to both the group around
wall: right, row 02-05
Megen, van
Joseph Hubertus
∗ 1916-12-09
† 1945-04-05
Dohnsen, D
- Aid to People in Hiding L.O. - Underground Press - Aid to Jews - Netwerk Bongaerts - Broekhuizen -

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 …

wall: left, row 05-01
Peter Antonius Joseph
∗ 1916-06-20
† 1947-06-24
- Aid to People in Hiding L.O. - Netwerk Bongaerts - Aid to Jews - Intelligence - Broekhuizen -

Toon Peeters, popularly known as blacksmith Toontje, was a blacksmith and bicycle dealer. [1]
Cammaert writes about him:
In Broekhuizen and Broekhuizenvorst the …
wall: left, row 04-05
Hendrikus Hubertus
∗ 1917-08-24
† 1945-03-15
Hameln (D
- Underground Press - Initial resistance - Ordedienst (O.D.) - Police - Heerlen - Intelligence - Netwerk Bongaerts - Peace Carillon -

Harrie - Harry --> Tobben was a former soldier and after his demobilization by the Germans in 1940 member of the mine police. Was involved, among other things, in acts of sabotage in the …
wall: left, row 19-05