The Para who stayed behind in Arnhem, edited and translated by Dick Beumer and Ron Wenting
Booklet published privately in the Netherlands, 34 pages. A4 size booklet (N5303OS)
From the foreword: In 1959 the Arnhem police officer J.D. van Maris wrote down this story. As well as his own personal recollections, he added the information which he received from his old colleagues of the Arnhem Police Corps. Some of them were directly involved with many of the events which happened during the battle, and are therefore first-hand accounts. In addition, the main character himself, Robert William 'Bob' Peatling, HQ Coy, 2nd Battalion, The Parachute Regiment, had been interviewed and he filled in all the gaps in the story.
This is how his story began....
A few months ago, in a small hiding place in the attic of the Police Station on Bovenbeekstraat (which could be accessed by a ladder opposite the compatibility room), two dirty little pans and a half burnt writing-pad with partially readable sentences in English were found. This find reminded some people of the glorious episode in September 1944, the so called 'Battle of Arnhem' which took place some 15 years ago. A number of my colleagues were around in those days, but only a few knew about the incredible story of the Parachutist who stayed behind in Arnhem. The story is worthy of telling because our police station played such an important role. It's the story of a very normal man, no hero at all, who had done nothing extraordinary in his life prior to Arnhem, but a man who (without knowing it himself) became a hero because he refused to give up even in the face of overwhelming odds.
For 6 weeks he stayed in an empty and looted city, surrounded by enemies, with hardly any food or water. The one thing which kept him going was that he couldn't bear the thought of becoming a prisoner of the Germans. Finally he was rewarded for his persistence and he managed to escape out of the police station under the noses of the Germans, but he had to stay in a hiding place in the centre of the city for another 8 weeks. Now he no longer had to fear death by starvation but it was still dangerous to be seen. Finally, on December the 31 st, 1944, he said goodbye to Arnhem and became the last of the Airborne troops, who had reached their target way back on the 17th September, to leave the city....
Condition of the booklet is generally excellent. The covers have one or two very minor scuffs along the edges and corners but are clean and bright, the staple spine is intact and all pages are clean, intact, unblemished and tightly bound. There is a small price sticker on the rear side cover