JOHN F. BYERS|
World War II
Memories and Biography
(Taken from a letter to Pete Henry)
16848 Jacinto Rd.
Bend, Oregon 97702
Just a line in response to your note. No nothing was done to displease John. He hadn't been himself for the past year or so. In June, he started complaining that his left shoulder hurt and finally went to the doctor. In July, we got the bad news - John has cancer. Right now he's having x-ray treatments five days a week. We have nearly five weeks to go yet. He's on very strong medication as the pain is terrible. We have a new cancer clinic in Bend, a 45-mile trip every day. We hope it will help.
Mrs. John "Toots" Byers
WARREN OAKLEY'S PILOT
Lost 22 December 1943
World War II
Memories and Biography
Letter to John F. Byers dated 14 June 1945
From: Uronissculaun 16 Hasselg
Relief to the Anglo-American Broken Wing
Do you remember us? You came to Holland (?) and conducted to me in Waterschei by my friend Albert Bidslot (?) with bicycles, who took the train to Hasselt (?) and you remained at home from 15 to 17 January 1944. You said it was very dangerous to leave too soon because you were so much better off than in the last farmstead.
You gave a light to me and a belt to my son. My daughter of 14 years was in love with
You gave a light to me and a belt to my son. My daughter of 14 years was in love with your friend Royce F. MacGillvary, who stayed with you and left with you, going to Brussels.
I hope you will tell us what happened to you and how and when you returned to England. My wife will write quickly when you answer.
Postcard from Brussels 1945 from Mme. Balter (Torn-Short).
Postcard from Marcel LeBorgne, 30 Rue J. Ballings, Evere-Bruxelles
Madame - in French about son John Belgi Que
Letter from Marcel (no date)
A bit of news out of Belgium. I hope you will remember me. I am Marcel - you called me "Sergeant Policeman," from Evere, whom you accompanied from "Miss Black Hair," went with you by Mrs. Cloes, on the cemetery from Brussels and I came often to visit with you.
All of us have been captured by the Germans. Henri, the Dutchman was caught about 4th May 1944 in Antwerp. Mrs. Cloes was caught about 20th June 1944 and the same time two of your friends that we got there.
Miss Black Hair and her mother and myself caught 1 August 1944. Only Mrs. White hair didn't go to prison.
We thank them all - all of the "White Brigade."
We still have fond memories of you passing through Brussels - we all would have loved to have kept you here until Liberation.
Letter 5 September 1944 - Marcel LeBorgne
We are at last free! Madame Cloes, Madam Jeanne, myself. We were imprisoned because the Gestapo learned through Henri, the Hollander, that we had helped you and others that had parachuted in.
Letter 2 November 1945 - Rehem
Miss J. Spierings - Dennenoord, Rehem (Limb), Belgium
Perhaps you remember that little Dutch girl that you passed the Holland-Belgium border.
Letter 20 October 1945 (Echt) Family Housmans, Ophoven 1, Echt, Limburg, Holland
We are very interested in learning if you were successful in getting back to England after you left us. I believe our place is about the last place you were at while in the Netherlands.
Do you remember the 43-44 winter when the Allies Air Forces came every day and every night and you sitting by the window hoping to see them?
We learned that Robert Liffaure and George Baillerex (?) the two French war prisoners arrived safely home. We've heard nothing from Ruska or Charkof.
Do you remember little Girdle who often sat on your shoulders and played cards with you the whole day? She is home again with her parents, sisters, and brothers, and often visit us. The Germans did not catch them. You will remember the farm where you waited. In the evenings and getting dark, you'd look at the clock to see if 6 o'clock and time to milk the cows. And several times you had to hide in the barn with Nic, the Jew, who is still doing fine. And when you had to hide behind the hay with Ruska when it was dangerous.
The photo we made behind the house is pretty good. The Daybook in which you wrote a few lines is still here. And there are several other names of pilots in it who were here after you were gone. The Germans never discovered us. Every day I use your fountain pen (pencil). You left us on 14 January 1944.
Signed: Lentje Housmans