Jongh, Andree de, 1916-

Andree de Jongh was a Belgian school-master’s daughter who helped set up an escape route for Prisoners of War (POWs) known as the Comet Line. She organized a chain of contacts from Brussels via Paris to Bilbao and Gibraltar. In August 1941 she turned up at the British consulate in Bilbao with a British soldier and two Belgians and thereafter provided a regular supply of escapees. She was first interrogated by the Gestapo in 1941 who put a price on her father’s head. He was captured and executed the year after. In May 1942 de Jongh moved the headquarters of her organization to Paris and continued to help POWs but in the spring of 1943 she was arrested on the Spanish frontier. She was sent to Fresnes Prison in Paris and then to a concentration camp in Germany but the Gestapo never realized the important role she had played in running the Comet Line. Twenty-three of those who helped to run the line were executed but de Jongh survived and went on to work with lepers in Addis Ababa after the war.

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