Reports from Other Escape and Evasion Organizations

  • Association of Rescuers of Allied Airmen (l’Association des sauveteurs d’Aviateurs Alliés) (ASAA). The goals of the ASAA are : To recall the memory of these young airmen who perished or were helped to escape on our soil and ensure their memory among younger generations. To recall the memory and collect testimonies of people in our region who did not hesitate, despite the Occupation, to help these airmen lodging them and conveying them on the way to Freedom.  To locate the crash sites of the aircraft.  To re-establish friendly links (originally made with the airmen themselves) with their descendants.  To keep up these links with the French families or connected institutions such as schools, town halls, etc.  To organise events such as conferences, exhibitions, informative literature, commemoration ceremonies etc.  See their website at http://asaapicardie3945.fr/. On September 14-15, 2019, the ASAA hosted the visit of   of the EDGE, HOULIHAN and WATTS families – Leglantiers, Saint-Just-en-Chaussee, Wavignies, Froissy, Beauvoir (Oise).

 

  • Basque Pyrenees Freedom Trails Association.  For the weekend of 29-30 of June 2019, BPFTA has organised a two-day commemorative trek from Burdintxuruketa in Mendive, over the Franco-Spanish border and down to Otsagabia in Navarre, along the ww2 Belgian escape line. Tribute ceremonies are being planned on both sides of the frontier – Mendive, Casas de Irati, Otsagabia, Pamplona, San Sebastián and Hernani.  For further information, see their website: Basque Pyrenees Freedom Trails Association (BPFTA): https://www.bpftaww2.com/en/home/.

 

  • Belgian Air Force Association. The annual “Remembrance Day” ceremony organized by the “Belgian Air Force Association” will be held on Saturday 12 October at 11.30 am at the monument located in the Cinquantenaire Park (next to the Royal Army Museum).  This memorial is dedicated to the memory of all who gave their lives in ordered air service.  For further information see their website.

 

  • Comete Line Remembrance.
    Brigitte d’Oultremont

    Comete Line Remembrance held its Reunion Week-End Comète on 18-19-20 October 2019.  To view the June Comete Line newsletter, click on the following pdf file:  June 2019 newsletter.  To view a news story published Oct. 22, 2019 about a plaque commemorating the Rume (Belg.)-Bachy (Fr.) portion of the Comet Line, and guide Henriette Hanotte’s role in it, click on the image below:

  • Eighth Air Force Historical Society holds its 45th Annual Reunion October 16-20, 2019 at the Sheraton Westport Lakeside Chalet in St. Louis, MO.  Activities include the Sights of St. Louis Tour, Boeing James S. McDonnell Prologue Room, Holocaust Museum and Learning Center, and Sights and Shops in St. Charles Tour.  For details click on https://www.8thafhs.org/old/new/.  The 2020 Annual Reunion will be held in Memphis, Tennessee.

 

  • Friends of the Comet Line (Les amis du réseau Comète, Comète Sud Au Pays Basque) -Geoff Cooper  of “The Friends of the Comet Line” says it is “an association from France’s Basque Country with the aim of commemorating the activities of the Comet Line in the Pays Basque.  Our site is bi-lingual – French and English – and it’s updated regularly.”  For details, see https://cometepaysbasque.blogspot.com/.

 

 

  • Monte San Martino Trust.   New information posted on Nov. 9, 2019 was as follows:   “After three years’ work, the Monte San Martino Trust’s remarkable archive of memoirs by former prisoners of war in Italy has now gone online.  The archive, which includes an index of PoWs and a list of PoW camps, can be accessed at archives.msmtrust.org.uk or through our main website, www.msmtrust.org.uk.  Our team of English and Italian workers, led by trustee Christine English, archivist Nicola Waddington and IT consultant George Mitchell, have transcribed hundreds of memoirs written by the ex-PoWs and, in some cases, by their relatives. The archive, which is of value to both family and professional researchers, will continue to grow as more information comes to light.  We hope you enjoy this treasure-trove, which has been unveiled to coincide with the Trust’s 30th anniversary lunch on 13th November 2019.  John Simkins, Adminstrator.”
    Please click here to read details about this free event and to register. Registered participants will receive a Zoom link one week before the event.
    If you have any queries I shall be delighted to answer them at info@msmtrust.org.uk
    Kind regards,
    John Simkins,
    Administrator, MSMT”

“Dear Supporter,
This is to let you know that the Monte San Martino Trust’s annual lunch will be held on Wednesday 10 November 2021 at the Royal Overseas League, London. We sincerely hope that, unlike last year, restrictions resulting from COVID-19 will not cause it to be cancelled. Please keep the date! Invitations will be sent out in September.
The Zoominar to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the publication of Eric Newby’s Love and War in the Apennines attracted 170 attendees and raised £1,000 in donations, for which we are very grateful. If you were not able to join the event you may wish to look at a recording by clicking here.
The Trust’s annual newsletter will be sent out by post or be available through our website by the end of June.
Kind regards,
John Simkins,
Administrator, MSMT”
www.msmtrust.org.uk
info@msmtrust.org.uk

On June 10, 2021 the following was received:

Dear MSMT Supporter,
This is to let you know that the Monte San Martino Trust’s annual newsletter, dated June 2021, has been uploaded on our website. Please click here to read it. Although, unfortunately, the pandemic has affected our student bursary programme and hit social activities such as last year’s annual lunch, you will discover that lots has been going on behind the scenes! We hope you will enjoy catching up with our progress on a number of fronts.
Supporters in the U.K. who have given us their addresses will be receiving a copy through the post.
As mentioned in the newsletter, we sincerely hope that this year’s annual lunch, scheduled for Wednesday 10 November at the Royal Overseas League, London, will take place and we look forward to seeing as many of you there as possible. Please keep the date! Invitations will be emailed in September.
Kind regards,
John Simkins,
Administrator, MSMT

On Sept. 16, 2021  it was announced that the Monte San Martino Trust Lunch would be held  on Wednesday 10th November 2021
12.00 noon for 1.00 p.m at The Royal Overseas League, India & Pakistan Hall
Overseas House, Park Place, St James’s Street, London SW1A 1LR
  • WWII Escape Lines Memorial Society.  The 31st Annual ELMS Reunion/Memorial Day Weekend will be held at the Double Tree by Hilton Hotel in York from 21 April to 24 April, 2022.  The hotel is in the center of York, within easy traveling distance of Eden Camp Museum.  For more details, see their website.  The Tenna Valley Trail walk is planned for May 2022.  See the website for additional helper/escaper/evader stories.  (NOTE, AS OF DEC. 26, 2021, WHEN THEIR WEBSITE WAS CHECKED, BOTH EVENTS HAD BEEN CANCELLED.)