Knottenbelt, Maarten Jan

    Date of birth:
    March 12th, 1920 (Batavia, Dutch East indies)
    Date of death:
    August 19th, 2004 (The Hague, the Netherlands)
    Nationality:
    Dutch (1815-present, Kingdom)

    Biography

    Maarten Knottenbelt served as commando in the British Army. He survived a torpedo attack on the Dutch steam merchant ship "Alwaki" on 10 July 1940.

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    Period:
    Second World War (1939-1945)
    Rank:
    Reserve-Eerste Luitenant v/h Wapen der Infanterie
    Unit:
    No. 2 Troop, No. 10 Commando, 1st Airborne Division, Army Air Corps, British Army
    Awarded on:
    August 30th, 1948
    Recommendation:
    For having distinguished himself in combat by excellents acts of courage, tact and loyalty:
    1. having participated actively, entirely voluntarily and in an exemplary and fearless manner under trying and often life or death situations in the rank of Lieutenant, together with a number of Dutch soldiers, posted to the British No. 2 Troop, No. 10 Commando in the fighting against the Japanese enemy in Burma;
    2. after having returned to England in August 1944 voluntary reporting again in order to participate in the landing near Arnhem as Dutch liaison officer; furthermore during the subsequent action in September taking charge of a detachment of some 25 British soldiers of the West Yorks on his own initiative and defending a group of houses with them in Oosterbeek important to the fighting; Thereafter contacting Dutch resistance fighters, rounding up and guiding Polish forces crossing the Rhine near Oosterbeek and finally, where Allied units were compelled to withdraw across the Rhine, swimming across the river although having been wounded himself;
    3. after having returned to England again and reporting voluntarily for the third time in order to land by parachute near Barneveld on April 3, 1945, although he had never been trained for it and acting as commander of a unit of untrained men of the BS (Forces of the Interior) and having put up an ambush in close vicinity of the enemy twice in order to enable Allied troops to cross the Apeldoorn canal near Oenen.
    Ridder vierde klasse der Militaire Willems Orde (MWO.4)
    Period:
    Second World War (1939-1945)
    Rank:
    Reserve-Eerste Luitenant v/h Wapen der Infanterie
    Unit:
    No. 2 Troop, No. 10 Commando, 1st Airborne Division, I Airborne Corps, First Allied Airborne Army
    Awarded on:
    March 30th, 1945
    Awarded for:
    Operation Market Garden
    Bronzen Kruis (BK)
    "Subordinated to the Airborne Corps, which operated in the vicinity of Arnhem and Nijmegen in mid-September 1944, he showed courage and good performance, ability and stamina, by performing well after his landing."
    K.B. no. 31
    Repealed by Royal Degree no. 8 of 30 August 1948
    Period:
    Second World War (1939-1945)
    with 2 clasps
    Oorlogsherinneringskruis (OHK)

    Sources

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