NIK, an umbrella organization representing thirty Dutch communities, announced that the Jewish cemetery in the village of Den Ham, eighty miles east of Amsterdam, was used for the first time in almost a century to inter a Holocaust survivor who once lived there.
The niftar, Juliana Beatrix Irene Slaat-Luycx (75), was born in 1941 during the Nazi occupation. Her parents defiantly named her after the Dutch royalty as an expression of resistance against the German occupier.
Her dying wish was to be buried in her birthplace and not in Germany, where she had moved after the war. To fulfill her wish activists needed to cut through a lot of red tape to use a cemetery that was unused for almost a century.
“It took effort from a lot of people but it is a beautiful thing that she can be laid to rest here and I hope she finds peace,” Slaat-Luycx’s daughter said.
During the past twelve months, similar levayos took place at an old cemetery in the province of Groningen and at two cemeteries in the Gelderland province.
Jews lived in Ham since 1750. Its cemetery was established in 1864. The most recent levayah there was in 1920. Many Dutch villages and towns lost their Jews when three quarters of the country’s 140,000 strong Jewish community perished in the Holocaust. Their cemeteries fell into disuse.
NIK also restored thousands of old headstones at the neglected Jewish cemetery of Oisterwijk, sixty miles south of Amsterdam.