Kornelis Krans <i>(Kees)</i>
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Kornelis Krans is listed in the Resistance Memorial on the
left wall, row 20 #05

Limburg 1940-1945,
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The fallen resistance people in Limburg


Kornelis Krans (Kees)

 30-03-1887 Hoogezand      02-03-1944 Helmond (56)
- Initial resistance - Aid to People in Hiding L.O. - Aid to Jews - Forced Labor - Helden - Peace Carillon -

Het Grote Gebod – L.O.

    Kees Krans and his wife bought in 1938 the Bovensbos farm in Helden. [1]
    At the beginning of the war, they housed a Jewish family in an underground hiding place just a stone’s throw from their house. When, after the strikes of April and May 1943, which included the miners’ strike, hiding took on mass dimensions, the resistance movement in Venlo came up with the idea of setting up military training camps in the forests of North and Middle Limburg. For this purpose, Krans provided some dismountable chicken coops. These were set up in the Bovensbos forest behind the farm. Since the people in hiding did not take their own security very seriously, all sorts of rumors soon began to circulate. The consequences of so much gossip could not fail to be felt.
    A Dutch Nazi who had discovered the camp in July 1943 and reported it to the police and party comrades was liquidated by order of the camp command. A completely unnecessary and even fatal decision, as it would turn out.
    While the camp was being evacuated, after a warning by the police, some Sipo officers arrived from Maastricht. However, they did not dare to enter the forest before the reinforcements arrived. So they first went to the Krans farm:
    The Sipo arrested the Krans-Dorenbos couple and their son Gerrit. A neighbor boy, Albert Schers, who occasionally brought milk to the camp, was also arrested. The same fate befell the Jewish De Jong family from Nijmegen, a married couple with a daughter, who were housed in an underground hiding place near the farm. [2]
    Kornelis Krans was arrested in Helden/Bovensbos farm on July 16, 1943. [3]
    Dr. Fred Cammaert said during his speech at the unveiling of the memorial plaque on the Peace Carillon next to the Limburg Province Resistance Monument:
    He was arrested and taken to a prison in Germany. Seriously ill, he returned to the Netherlands, where he died in March 1944. [4]
    According to Oorlogsbronnen, he was imprisoned in the Amersfoort camp until October 22, 1943. [3]
    Together with his son Gerrit, he was then employed by a farmer in Geldern (Germany). However, Kees was in poor health and had a wound on his leg. He fell ill and was brought to the hospital in Geldern. Because of his stomach and his rotting leg, he was picked up from Geldern by his future daughter-in-law in an ambulance and taken to the hospital in Helmond. By this time, he was already dying and his wife could not see him regain consciousness. [1]
    For more information on the events in the Bovensbos, please read the page on the Bovensbos monument. [5]
    He is buried in the Protestant cemetery of Helenaveen, grave 144 [6#8].
    The grave is located at the back right, under number 144. A second grave with the same number has not been established. [6#12]
    Kornelis ( Kees ) Krans is listed in the Erelijst 1940-1945 (Honor Roll of the Dutch Parliament). [7]


    1. moennik.nl Kees Krans
    2. Dr. F. Cammaert, Het Verborgen Front – Geschiedenis van de georganiseerde illegaliteit in de provincie Limburg tijdens de Tweede Wereldoorlog. Doctorale scriptie 1994, Groningen
      8. De Ordedienst, pp.884-885
    3. oorlogsbronnen.nl tijdlijn Kornelis Krans
    4. Dr. F. Cammaert, speech bij de onthulling van de plaquette naast het vredescarillon. (dead link)
    5. Helden, ‘Bovensbos-monument’
    6. Archief Oorlogsgravenstichting (@ Nationaal archief), Dossier Kornelis Krans • #8#12
    7. Erelijst 1940-1945
    8. Oorlogsgravenstichting.nl