ctrp305 Occupation, WWII and Immigration

Hugh Timmerman has been gathering facts based on his own memory of living under occupation in world war II Holland. The events that took place before his eyes and in his family home would forever be burned into his memory and remain something he wanted to better understand. More than 65 years later his research and his travels have helped him piece together the story of the allied plane that crashed on his property, as well as the stories of all the soldiers that died on his family farm.

This month Hugh returned to the Netherlands from his home in Canada, to celebrate his 50th wedding anniversary. Together we sat down to do this podcast, part 1 of 2, on what he remembers from his childhood during the war, his experience as an immigrant in Canada, and how he went about putting together this book.

His Book: Bombers in the Night Sky

The music of Utah Phillips used throughout this program. (Trooper’s Lament and Enola Gay)

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4 thoughts on “ctrp305 Occupation, WWII and Immigration

  • June 1, 2009 at 10:02 pm
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    Nice interview, and what a story.

    One interesting observation: It was revealing when you asked Hugh if he bonded with his fellow Dutch immigrants in Canada, and his reply was essentially that most immigrants back then were focused on assimilating to Canadian society. It seems as though immigrants at that time (at least to Canada and the U.S.) were quite eager to “blend in.” That was certainly also the case with my grandparents, who came to the U.S. from Poland in the 1920s.

    • June 3, 2009 at 12:45 am
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      I did notice that yes. good you pointed it out. Times have changed.. the generation I grew up in was taught all about where we came from and our traditions despite being located in North America. Indeed Hugh was very clear on that one.

  • August 9, 2009 at 4:03 pm
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    Hi there.
    That was an interesting interview to say the least. I looked around for part II but I couldn’t locate it. My name is no co-incidence, Hugh is my uncle and I’m very proud of him
    a) for having the fortitude to write and publish this book
    b) for being the family historian
    c) for being an all-around good guy most of the time 🙂

    I know that he mentioned that the topic of the war would come up quite often amongst his siblings, but it really wasn’t discussed much in my house when I was young. I learned most of what my parents endured during a visit (with my parents) to Nord Brabant about 15 years ago … that’s when the stories really started to fly. I learned lots from uncle Hugh’s book as well and I find this a very interesting part of my family’s history.

    Anyway, I could just be blind, but, if you could post a link to part II I would appreciate being able to have a listen.

    Thanks.
    Gerry Timmermans
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

  • August 10, 2009 at 7:19 pm
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    Hi Gerry! Ooh I honored to hear from another member of the clan. You’re right, Part II is not to be found, I never got around to putting it up.. yet. I will. I promise. Ill let you know when I do, Ill make it this month. Oh and if you see cousin Petra, tell her you met her housemate.

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