Thousend times thanks!

To all the followers of the blog, to anyone who has been supportive of Frank or us in the last months and especially after his untimely death we want to say thanks from the bottom of our hearts. In the week after his passing we received so much warmth, stories, care and love, hardly describable. To us it was a very precious and valuable week and it was so good to have Frank at home where so many of his friends could visit him. And all the help, stories and info shared in that week led to a beautiful goodbye ceremony on a beautiful sunny autumn day. For those of you who could not attend, or those of you who wish to reread the funeral speeches, we publice them here (in dutch and english) with some pictures in grateful memory of, and tributed to Frank.We will miss him dearly, thanks for being with him and with us, one way or another,

On behalf of my family and his closest friends, Esther

Foto's Frank

vrijdag 28 oktober 2011

47 Air Despatch squadron in english

The Funeral of Frank Van Den Bergh

Speech by

Major Colin Munce RLC
Officer Commanding 47 Air Despatch Squadron RLC

Family and friends of Frank Van Den Bergh, ladies and gentlemen. It is my great honour to be here today to represent 47 Air Despatch Squadron, the Air Despatch Association and Air Despatchers throughout the world. I am eternally grateful to the family of Frank and to Frans Amerlaan for your outstanding efforts in ensuring the message of Frank’s death reached us all in the UK.  Indeed, I am humbled to be able to join you today in order to pay our respects and say farewell to one of our own.
I am sure I speak for everyone here when I say how shocked and saddened we were by the news of Frank’s untimely death.  We had drawn great comfort from his presence at the Air Despatch Memorial Service only 4 weeks ago.  Despite his recent illness, we fondly remember him as he proudly overlooked the Air Despatch Memorial, looking resplendent in his Air Despatch and Airborne regalia.

Frank van Den Bergh holds a very special place in the hearts of Air Despatchers throughout the world.  As you all will know, it is for his tremendous work in commemorating the Air Despatchers at Arnhem.  But you must look deep into the soul of an Air Despatcher to understand the importance of Arnhem to everything we do today.  The unique espirit de corps, fighting spirit and professionalism of the modern Air Despatcher was forged in the hell of Operation Market Garden and has survived ever since.  There can be no greater tribute to the Air Despatchers of Arnhem than to commemorate them at the memorial in Oosterbeek.  We are all hugely grateful to Frank for the instrumental role he had in commissioning the memorial.
I will share with you the story of a young Air Despatcher who recently made his first visit to Arnhem, only 4 weeks ago.  This young man was only 20 years old and had barely heard of Arnhem, never mind understanding what had happened there.  After the memorial service, he reflected on what he had just seen and said to me that suddenly ‘it all just made sense’.  He had been struck by the magnitude of the effort which Frank and all of our friends in Arnhem go to in order to ensure we always remember the Air Despatchers at Arnhem.  Today, we remember Frank and the special part he has played in that.  We owe you a debt gratitude for ensuring their story lives on.

Indeed, Frank has carried the torch for so long and continually championed the memory of the Arnhem Air Despatchers.  His passion and energy in flying the flag is an excellent example for us all to follow.  We all know the greatest tribute to Frank’s memory will be to pick up the flag and continue the legacy of his work in Arnhem.
In recognising Frank’s unique and immense contribution to the Air Despatch community, it is easy to forget there was so much more to Frank.  Few will disagree when Frank is described as an absolute expert when it comes to the history of Operation Market Garden and the Second World War.

Frank Van Den Bergh, it only leaves me to bid you farewell.

‘Action Stations!’             ‘Red On!’             ‘Green On!’

Safe journey my friend.  The name ‘Frank Van Den Bergh’ will always be remembered by Air Despatchers throughout the world.

Vaarwel en goede reis mijn vriend.

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