5 May 1945

The fifth day of May has special significance in The Netherlands because the liberation of the Nazi armies from Germany was a fact in 1945, after five year of occupation, terror, slavery and hunger The Allied Forces came and an armistice was signed. Military bands marched through the streets; some of them came back several years later to celebrate again, like this group in British uniforms but of Polish origin. The southern part of The Netherlands was liberated half a year earlier, but the Allied Forces became stuck near Arnhem, where a big river blocked their way.

Thousands of Jews had been captured and killed in Germany. Many young people were sheltered by farmers and other people, because they were chased by the Nazis, who wanted them to work for them in their weapons factories (only traitors went there), especially in the last year of the war when they were running out of ammunition.

When the month of May came, The Netherlands had the most severe winter in living memory behind it, plus lack of food and heating (no coal, no gas, no electricity). Most people looked like skeletons. That fifth day it was beautiful weather. In all the cities and villages people left their houses and went on the streets, singing and waving with the national colors, embracing and kissing each other, crying of joy. American, British and Canadian soldiers came from the southern part of the country with food in all their vehicles they had.

The Sunday that followed, all the churches of the country were filled to overflowing (the towers had no bells, because they were taken away by the enemy, making cannons and bullets of them). Generators of the military provided electricity for the organs.