Friday, February 10, 2006

Blue and white striped pajamas - epilogue

When Ellen Christensen escaped the Germans on the night the Lemon died, she left her handbag at the house. In it were four counterfeit identification cards and her account marker for the shopping centre Magasin du Nord. The Gestapo knew her identity now. She had to go underground.

Although she continued her resistance activities as a wanted woman, the Germans never found her. Ellen survived the war. She worked for a while as a surgery nurse in Sweden before she went to work for the Danish Red Cross in Poland. She also worked in Greece before civil war broke out. Working conditions were harsh, leaving her with a chronic stomach condition.

In 1953 Ellen received the Florence Nightingale medal from the Red Cross as recog-nition for her active humani-tarian work during the war. In the six day war of 1967 she worked in Israel, where she got badly hurt in an ambulance roll-over. Not long after she retired from nursing.

In 1972 she presented her medal to the Freedom Mus-eum in Copenhagen where it is exhibited. Ellen was unsenti-mental about her resistance past. The pressure had scarred her, and like many other resistance people she seldom talked about those times.

The last 26 years of her life former head nurse Ellen Chris-tensen lived at the Karoline-lundcenteret in Gjern. She died in 1998 at the age of 85.

In her will, she bequeathed all her earthly belongings to the Lemon's daughter.

- phew -

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Anonymous anne said...

No, no, there must be more!

From the way you relate all the details, it sounds like a story that was passed down in your family...

...and I think you are related to someone in the epic tale.

Was the Lemon's daughter your mother or aunt?

Or maybe you are related to the baby who was four months old in Lemon's wife's belly at the time of his demise?

Maybe one of the Nyegaard boys was your grandfather or uncle?

Did Ellen have an affair with the Lemon and produce a child she could never acknowledge?

Inquiring minds want to know!

7:44 am  
Blogger Mikkel said...

I am not, as far as I know, related to anyone in the story. I have put it together from multiple sources.

12:06 pm  
Blogger Mikkel said...

Personally I have no doubt that they were lovers.

12:14 pm  
Blogger Mikkel said...

I've been fascinated with the Lemon for years. Here's a guy who never amounted to anything. But then when everybody surrendered, the politicians, the army, even the fucking king, he didn't. What an exit. It makes me cry every time.

6:32 pm  
Anonymous anne said...

Okay, you win (sigh).

When I get to the end of a good book, I always sigh mournfully that it is over.

In fact, I have sighed mournfully recently over a couple of chapters that have ended in my life...

Thank you for filling in the rest of the tale for me, Mikkel. Amazing job on the compilation of sources!

Your writing is something I admire: riveting at times, but always entertaining and thoughtful.

I look forward to shady acres' return.

6:55 am  
Blogger Mikkel said...

We'll be back in two thirds of a jiffy!

1:13 pm  

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