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Meals for the school kids

But first the inventory of the kitchen in the Jesuit convent.

We were on good terms with the family of Mayor Hens.
And in 1941, Hens was still in the town hall.
One day I had to go there for a trifle and saw the NSB man Gaaietaan coming out of the mayor’s office. When I came in, I asked the mayor:
“What did that guy want here?” Hens was a bit tense and said: “He wants us to provide any support possible in setting up a soup kitchen for the schoolchildren.” Before the war, this had always been part of the work of the St. Elizabeth club, of which his wife was a member of the board. I replied: “Well, then, the Catholic Action should precede them by starting tomorrow.” There had been thoughts of that before but once more I was the one who spoke it out a bit too quick.

I started brainstorming with Mrs. Meeuwissen, who had always cooked for schoolchildren. Where do we get food from? And the Elisabeth club does not have any more utensils for kitchen and canteen. Where do we get something like this? And where could we do it? And are not the Germans going to chase us away and will then the Winterhilfswerk do the job? Both she and Miss Ubags wanted to participate, if I would find a solution. Men of the K.A. went stockpiling for the children’s kitchen among the farmers in the area, with a remarkable enthusiasm to do something for other children. So the drivers of the laundry could bring in bags full of potatoes. (Autumn, 1941)
In Maastricht a foundation Fabrieksvoeding (Food in the factory) had been established.
I registered there with the laundry and for the occupants, our children’s kitchen became a factory kitchen, which kept the Winterhilfe out of it. For kitchen utensils, I went to the site manager of the building company in the Reichsschule. He squeezed an eye and we took out the entire kitchen equipment, including a steam boiler for 200 liters of food. The whole was setup in a loft of the laundry and during the winter of 1941 the ladies of the former St. Elizabeth club could cook for the schoolchildren of Valkenburg again.

top The Raid

One morning in the spring of 1942, suddenly the whole building was surrounded by a unit of the Dutch rural police under the command of sergeant Renesse (a fanatical NSB and swot) (The Dutch rural police was and still is today a military unit. So the rankings there are also military. Its name is marechaussee. ) When he came in unannouncedly to me, he said: “You are under detention because of the suspicion of forbidden possession of firearms.” I had to show where the weapons were. When I pretended to have no idea of what he meant, he showed a piece of paper on which I believed to recognize the handwriting of a new employee. With a sketch and the instructions: “Weapons buried in the garden, revolver buried in the court, ammunition in barrels with soap.” Meanwhile an officer is digging in the court, on the search for the revolver. Chaplain Horsmans comes by the gate and Renesse goes to meet him. The gendarme nods to me with his head: he has got the revolver uncovered in the hole. He shovels it on the heap and throws a shovel of earth immediately upon it. He digs on eagerly. My wife had to stay inside. The telephone was cut off. All the machines in the

Album : Resistance

Pierre Schunck
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