In April 1949, the Dutch established several cemeteries throughout Indonesia where the reburial of the remains from mass graves in Indonesia found place. The Dutch Foundation for War Burials maintains these cemeteries.
Bounded by a small canal and conifer trees, one of the Dutch War Cemeteries - Field of Honour Kalibanteng - in Semarang was built in the sixties. It was designed as a triangle where 3000 war victims of all ages and religions, that died as a result of the appalling conditions in the camps during the Japanese occupation from 1942 to 1945, were buried side by side; at the east side civilian women on the west civilian males and the children in the midst.
Although August 15 1945 marked the end of WWII, the struggle for independence and subsequent military actions after the war in Indonesia remained unsettled for their inhabitants, as a consequence of which more victims found a final resting place in one of the war cemeteries.
Sixty years after the reburial, our whole Family was finally able to visit the grave of my grandfather in Kalibanteng. For the very first time, our family had the time to commemorate him on this serene place and to pay their respect by laying flowers at his grave. This was also the wish of my father, who passed away in 2004 and who had never visited the grave of his own father.
We are very grateful to the local employees in Semarang who look after the cemetery and to the Dutch Foundation for War Burials for retaining the Field of Honour.
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