|“The Reckoning: Remembering the Dutch Resistance” DVD
War breaks out in Europe as Germany invades Poland. Eight months later, Hitler would publicaly broadcast that he would not invade Holland due to their neutrality during WWI. Within hours, this promise would become a treacherous lie that would engulf the small country in World War II. Innocence would die. Prejudice and persecution would spread and the preservation of human life would become a life and death mission for a small minority of ordinary Dutch citizens.
As a 20 year old bank teller in the Netherlands in 1940, Diet Eman and her fiancé, Hein Seitsma, would be plunged into underground activities as they attempted to hide Jews from the murderous Nazi advance. Robbing German offices, falsifying ID’s and hiding Jewish friends and neighbors, would change their lives forever and confront death itself. Diet was honored at Yad Vashem in Israel as one of the “Righteous Among the Nations.” She is 86 and lives in Grand Rapids, Michigan.
John (Knegt) Knight
Childhood should be filled with pleasant memories of playing, going to school and being in wonder at life itself. Such was the opposite for John Knight. As a young boy nearing his 9th birthday in the middle of the war, John witnessed the covert activities of his father’s resistance group and witnessed death and destruction at every imaginable level. John is 71 and resides in Grand Rapids, Michigan.
Having escaped Nazi power in Germany in the early 1930’s, Hans and his family moved to the Netherlands. Years later German forces invaded the country surrounding them once again with the merciless ideologies of the Third Reich. Hiding and assuming different identities would prove to be essential for his survival. Hans is 75 years old and lives in Amsterdam, NL.
Frieda was a young Jewish woman enjoying her teen years when the Nazi prejudice would target her family. The special relationship she had with her father would be ripped apart. She would journey through hatred, betrayal and a concentration camp called Auschwitz. Frieda is 81 and lives in Amsterdam, NL.
Jan Van Driel
As a 24 year old plumber in the Netherlands whose life was seemingly in order, the perils of World War II would plunge Jan into a world of fear and doubt. As he assisted in resistance efforts, he would question his faith and wrestle with the justice of God. Jan is 90 and resides in Zwijndrecht, NL.
A recent Navy recruit, John’s military future would find its end in the Nazi occupation of Holland. Subject to forced labor under the occupation, John would be a dock worker. He and his work colleagues would find themselves assisting the underground with weapon drops and sabotaging German shipping channels. John passed away on August 24, 2006 in Holland, Michigan. He was 88.