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The Undying Flame; Olympians killed in WW2

Discussion in 'WWII Books & Publications' started by GRW, Aug 3, 2021.

  1. GRW

    GRW Pillboxologist WW2|ORG Editor

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    Could be fascinating. Always seeing books about olympians in WW1, so this is new to me.
    "The tragic stories of almost 500 Olympians who were killed during the Second World War - including Jewish participants who perished in concentration camps during the Holocaust - have been revealed for the first time in a new book.
    While this year's Tokyo Olympics competitors are producing extraordinary feats in the world of sports, the Olympians who fell during the last major European war displayed heroism of a completely different order.
    Dozens of athletes died carrying out acts of gallantry in some of the war's major battles, including during the Allied invasion of the Continent - while almost 60 Jewish participants were killed in Nazi concentration camps in Central and Eastern Europe.
    Historian and screenwriter Nigel McCrery, who created the BBC TV series' Silent Witness and New Tricks, has meticulously researched the lives of all these fallen heroes for his new book, The Undying Flame.
    The only British gold medallist to die during the war was John Lander, who triumphed in the men's coxless fours at the 1928 Olympics in Amsterdam and was killed in the Battle of Hong Kong on Christmas Day 1941 aged 34.
    The Liverpudlian, who studied at Trinity College, lived in Hong Kong at the outset of the conflict and joined the Hong Kong Volunteer Defence Corps as a gunner. He was posted to One Battery at Stanley Fort before he was killed.
    One of the most poignant stories is that of the 1928 Dutch Gymnastics team who won gold at their home Olympics. Of the 12 women in the team, five were Jewish. Four of them were murdered by the Nazis during the war at Auschwitz or Sobibor - Estella Agsteribbe, Anna Dresden-Polak, Helena Kloot-Nordheim and Judikye Simons.
    The team's coach Gerrit Kleerekoper, who was Jewish, was also killed in a concentration camp."
    www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-9856213/New-book-remembers-Olympian-heroes-died-World-War-Two.html
     
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  2. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    In the Finnish army some five jewish soldiers were awarded EK2. They threw these in the forest.
     
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  3. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    In ww2 three olympic winners and altogether some 30 olympic other medal winners died for Finland.
     
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  4. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard Staff Member Patron  

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    Sounds fascinating, Gordon. I didn' t realize so many Olympians were killed in WW2.
     
  5. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    Originally the Olympic games were meant to take place in Japan. However, they refused in the shortest of time periods and Finland got the Olympics. I have all kinds of souveniers from 1940. Because of Winter War the games were cancelled. Yet, we did have the Olympics in 1952.
     
  6. GRW

    GRW Pillboxologist WW2|ORG Editor

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    Me neither, Lou. Not something that seems to be mentioned very often.

    Cheers Kai, didn't know that either.
     
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  7. Takao

    Takao Ace

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    I'm curious as to the title name.

    His book on those Olympians who died in WW1 was called "The Extinquished Flame", and this new one on WW2 is called "The Undying Flame."
     
  8. Takao

    Takao Ace

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  9. R Leonard

    R Leonard Member

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    Top one on that list, Silvano Abba, Bronze medal in Modern Pentathlon, 1936; killed in a cavalry charge on the Eastern Front.

    Gold went to Gotthard Handrick, a Luftwaffe fighter pilot. Survived the war and worked for Daimler-Benz after the war.

    Silver went to Charles Leonard, a US Army 2d Lieut. Also saw the war through and retired a Major General.
     
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2021
  10. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    I think it shows they never thought of themselves but their country instead. I salute YOU! Kph
     
  11. GRW

    GRW Pillboxologist WW2|ORG Editor

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    That is a curious choice.
     
  12. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    Anything to do with Money about the naming???
     

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