Mayor van de Mortel was appointed Mayor of Tilburg on 11 January 1940.
During the Second World War, the Mayor was removed from office with immediate effect by the (German) Reich Commissioner on July 12, 1944, and Ir. H. Hondius appointed acting mayor.
Mayor van de Mortel was taken hostage in St. Michielsgestel and Vught.
He was fired by the Minister of the Interior on September 25, 1944, but he was restored to his function by the Allies on October 27, 1944 when Tilburg was liberated.
Mayor van de Mortel proved himself a very tactful diplomat and a born regent during the German occupation.
He received three high awards for this, Knight in the Order of Oranje-Nassau, Knight in the Order of the Netherlands Lion and Knight in the Order of St. Gregory the Great.
In 1958, a bronze statue of Burgemeester van de Mortel made by Albert Termote was placed in the park of the Burgemeester van de Mortelplein, this square is also named after him.
The monument is in gratitude for the way in which he guided and protected the city during the difficult years of war and oppression.
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- Text: TracesOfWar.com
- Photos: Peter Mathijssen