Yitzchak Kalev was born in Jerusalem, Palestine. He has lived there for all his life. During WW2 he served in the Royal Navy on a minesweeper. He remembers seeing the German paratroopers land in Crete and the bombers on D-Day. He also fought in the IDF for many years in the War for Independence. He now lives in Jerusalem Israel and has a wife, son, and grandchildren. Yitzchak was interviewed for this project by his great-nephew Indigo Goldfarb-Lewis, who visited him in Jerusalem in December 2015.
Oral History Project March 29th, 2016
Jan De Vries was 18 years old when he decided to enter the war. He joined the army and passed basic training, choosing to enlist in the paratrooper – or Para – battalion. He went overseas in 1943; in England the Paras continued their training.
On June 5, 1944 the men got up and prepared the parachutes for D-Day. It was still stormy and they were surprised that they were sent off. De Vries was in one of the first Para battalions to land. He had to go in to capture a field, knock out a German headquarters, blow a bridge and protect the field so the rest of the troops could come in. Chaos reigned the first night, but he did achieve his objective, going on to fight his way through Normandy, the Netherlands, and into Germany. Jan is an Order of Canada recipient and we are very pleased to have hosted him at Crestwood.
admin July 9th, 2012