NATIONAL NEWS
Nazi killer Freddie dies at the age of 92

NAZI KILLER: Freddie Oversteegen

A SECOND World War heroine who used her good looks to entice Nazis before executing them has died.

Freddie Oversteegen, 92, teamed up with her older sister, Truus, and friend, Hannie Schaft, to lure Nazis to their deaths and smuggle Jewish children out of Dutch concentration camps.

They used dynamite to blow up railway tracks and bridges with Freddie shooting dead as many Nazi soldiers as she could using a gun she hid in the basket of her bicycle.

The trio even had their own slaughter routine, which was to approach the Nazi men in bars, flirt with them and beckon them into the woods "for a stroll".

Oversteegen and her sister were raised by their single mother in the village of Schoten and spent time making dolls for children caught up in the Spanish Civil War before also circulating anti-Nazi posters and pamphlets and then eventually joining the resistance.

Their home was a sanctuary for refugees from Germany and Amsterdam, too, including a Jewish couple and a mother and son who lived in their attic.

After the Nazis invaded Holland in May, 1940, the couple was moved to another location as Jewish community leaders feared a potential raid, because of the family's well-known political leanings.

"They were all deported and murdered," Oversteegen said in later years. "We never heard from them again. It still moves me dreadfully, whenever I talk about it."

The Oversteegen sisters were officially part of a seven-person resistance cell, which grew to include an eighth member, Schaft, after she joined in 1943.

But the three girls worked primarily as a stand-alone unit, acting on instructions from the Council of Resistance.

"We had to do it," Oversteegen said. "It was a necessary evil, killing those who betrayed the good people."

Schaft was assassinated by Dutch Nazis towards the end of the war.

After the war, Oversteegen served as a board member on the National Hannie Schaft Foundation, which was established by Truus.

Oversteegen later said she coped with the traumas of the war "by getting married and having babies".

She married Jan Dekker, taking the name Freddie Dekker-Oversteegen, and raised three children.

Truus wrote a memoir, Not Then, Not Now, Not Ever.

She died in 2016, two years after Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte awarded the sisters the Mobilisation War Cross, a military honour for service in the Second World War.


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