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Dorst, van, Bernardus "Ben"

Date of birth:
January 16th, 1907 (Barneveld, the Netherlands)
Date of death:
September 23rd, 1944 (Helmond, the Netherlands)
Buried on:
Dutch War Graves Catholic Cemetery Hortsedijk
Plot: C. Row: 1. Grave: 116.
Nationality:
Dutch (1815-present, Kingdom)

Biography

Ben van Dorst was born Janauary 16th, 1907 in Barneveld, the son of Willem Marinus van Dorst (Engineer NCS) and Hieltje Schok. He studied road and hydraulic engineering at the MTS in Utrecht. Subsequently he became an hydraulic engineer in Maasticht and later in Almelo. In 1929 he became technical official of the Waterboard District de Aa in Helmond. He also became a Red Cross volunteer, department Helmond in 1934. Here he was named section commander of the transport team and from 1935 its administrator. On May 12th, 1937, he married Johanna Theodora Catharina van der Meulen, born March 22nd, 1913 in Tilburg.

May 1940 saw Ben van Dorst serving with the Marine Corps as Sergeant Major and he was involved in the struggle for the bridges on the River Meuse in Rotterdam. After the capitulation he returned to Helmond, resuming his work and his voluntary work for the Red Cross. In 1941 he was named Deputy Commander of the Red Cross Transport section in Helmond. In this capacity the occupying forces permitted him to ride a motorcycle. This brought him in contact with the resistance group Albrecht. Van Dorst became a member of the Knokploeg Bakel (Combat team), participating in various actions around Helmond. Ben van Dorst was killed by German machinegun fire on September 23rd, 1944 while recovering, as Red Cross volunteer, the body of a co-citizen who had been killed.

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Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
Verzetstrijder
Unit:
Knokploeg Bakel (Resistance Group Bakel)
Awarded on:
December 21st, 1949
Recommendation:
"He has distinguished himself in connection with enemy actions by brave and tactful conduct and has thereby served the interests of the Kingdom by having joined an important military intelligence group as co worker in April 1944, having made military reconnaissance in Southeastern Brabant of areas restricted by the enemy such as airfields in order to gather information as complete as possible thereby rendering valuable services to the intelligence work.
Further, operating a secret telephone network, by accurately reporting the dislocation and movements of enemy troops, to which end he had enemy phone traffic tapped on the spot until he was mortally hit while giving aid to the wounded."

Royal Decree No.21, dated December 21st, 1949.
Kruis van Verdienste (KV)
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Awarded on:
1994

Sources