Holandia / Historia

A long journey to the hospital




In large parts of northern Groningen and the Westerkwartier, the liberators encountered little German resistance during their advance. Nevertheless, the population of the villages that lie in the field of fire of the German guns must be on their guard.

Whenever the Canadian liberation troops approach, grenades are fired from the Wadden island of Borkum and other artillery positions along the coast near Delfzijl. Uithuizermeeden is one of the villages where the residents suffered a lot in the aftermath of the war. Mr. W.T. Moorlach experiences frightening moments due to the artillery shelling.

Shortly before the arrival of the Canadians, several men from the neighborhood discuss the situation in front of his parental home. At the same time, a volley of shells is fired from Borkum. Father Moorlach gets a grenade splinter in his lower leg, which he only notices when he returns home. The grenades come unexpectedly and the Moorlach family seeks shelter in the basement of their home at night. Only father remains – because of his injury – in the house. “If there was a salvo, he came with pain and effort into the cellar,” Moorlach recalls. The doctor considers it more advisable that he be taken to a hospital in Groningen.

But how do you do that under war conditions? Shortly after a grenade hit nearby, he is transported to Groningen by gas-fired truck. It will be an Ommeland journey with quite a few obstacles, detours and a gas pot that breaks down. After a long journey, father Moorlach ends up in hospital and is finally in safe hands.

Source: Dagblad van het Noorden (2005)

Johan van Veenplein, Uithuizermeeden