Elisabeth de Boer – Bep

* Amsterdam October 28 1928
† Amsterdam May 8 1945

Elisabeth-de-BoerwwwElisabeth de Boer’s medical certificate of death states that she died on 8 May 1945 at 10 am. Cause of death: Gunshot Wound to the Stomach, Fourteen Perforations of the Intestines. On 14 May 1945, she was buried in the Nieuwe Ooster cemetery. She was only 16 years old.

At the time of her death, Elisabeth still lived at home with her parents Sietse de Boer (1884-1958) and Magdalena Maria de Wit (1885-1856). Elisabeth was the youngest of 6 children and known as ‘Bep’. Her siblings were Eerd (17 years older than Elisabeth), Nicolaas (‘Co’), Aaltje (‘Alie’), Jan, en Antonia (‘Annie’).  At the time of her death, nearly all of them were already married. Only Annie was still single, but she got married just after the war.

Elisabeth had gone to Dam Square with her cousin Geertruida (‘Truus’). The parents of Truus were Eerd, the youngest brother of her father Sietse, and Jacoba Beuger.  Although Elisabeth’s family always called her ‘Beppie’, her aunt Jacoba always called her ‘Liesje’.

Theo Zonsveld, the son of Truus relates:
“My mother rarely talked about that event that took place when she was 18 years old. She and her cousin Liesje (Elisabeth de Boer) had been on Dam Square when the shooting started. My mother pulled Liesje behind a flat cart and when the shooting stopped, they were taken to the hospital using the flat cart to transport Liesje.  According to my mother, Liesje had already died whilst on the cart, but the list mentions that it occurred the next day. Afterwards my mother was never able to cope with crowds again.”

Mrs M (‘Rietje’) de Boer-Schrage’s recollection of the events of 7 May 1945:
She still remembers that her cousin Elisabeth (calling name ‘Beppie’) was a sweet and well-mannered girl. The baby of the family. Rietje had married Jan de Boer, a brother of Elizabeth. He had been forced to work for the Germans in Berlin, but had escaped to Osnabruck. However, after 6 weeks he had to return to Berlin. During the last 6 months of the war, it was unknown whether he was still alive. Difficult times. Beppie resided on the Costakade with her cousin living 2 doors down from her.  The cousin had taken Beppie to Dam Square for the festivities celebrating the liberation. When the Germans started to shoot, they (i.e. the 2 girls) took shelter and lay low somewhere. Unfortunately Beppie was hit by stray bullets, a shot in the intestines. She was attended to in the Bijenkorf (a big department store), even transported to the hospital and operated on, but it was all futile. She was buried in the Oosterbegraafplaats, but at the time there were no coffins available. They had placed her on a door of the linen closet and had covered her with cardboard boxes. This made it all so much sadder. 

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