Lt Martin George Van Santvoord 3-G-7

Martin (or ‘Van’ as he quickly became called by his colleagues), was born on  July 19 1916 in Appleton, Wisconsin, USA . He was the son of Anthonius F. and Theresa Van Santvoord. He was married with Patricia E. Van Santvoord of Vancouver and their son was Anthony Martin Van Santvoord.

It is not known when he or his family moved t o Canada, but he completed his High School education and was a machinist before the outbreak of war. In 1940 he e n l i s t e d f i r s t in the wartime 3rd (Res) Battalion of the I r i s h F u s i l i e r s of Canada (Vancouver Regiment); as a married man he began active duty as an o f f i c e r cadet a t OTC(WC) on 19 Mar 43. There he graduated as a 2nd Lieut on 18 Jun and q u a l i f i e d a s a Lieutenant (Infantry) a t A.16 Calgary on 17 Jul 43. He joined the active service b a t t a l i o n of h i s

regiment a t Vernon on 19 Jul 43, and returned to A.16 on i n s t r u c t i o n a l duty on 16 Aug 43. On 19 May 44 he was attached for s i x months to OTC(EC) Brockville on i n s t r u c t i o n a l d u t i e s , and then took a four weeks course in Small Arms a t CSATC Nanaimo, ending on 7 Nov 44. On 19 Dec 44 he arrived in the UK and by 19 Feb 45 he was in NW Europe as a reinforcement o f f i c e r for 1 C SCOT R, joining the 1st Bn j u s t a f t e r the severe fighting and losses at Moyland Wood in Germany. He saw service as Pioneer Officer in the

Rhineland and a t Emmerich and gave valuable help in t h e l i b e r a t i o n of the village of Didam by virtue of his fluency in the Dutch language. This t a l e n t was again put to very good use in the fighting t o f r e e Deventer and elsewhere, as the unit moved into central and eastern Holland. Perhaps because he was so useful, and undoubtedly because there was a shortage of r i f l e platoon commanders, he was posted to ‘A’ Coy in mid-April 45. He gave on April 21-22 orders to the 18e peloton to liberate a part of the homeland of his ancestors.

Martin was killed in action on Sunday April 22 1945 age 28 during the liberation of Wagenborgen. He was temporarily buried in Siddeburen and on February 15 1946 reburied in Holten. He was temporarily buried in Siddeburen and on February 15 1946 reburied in Holten.


H i s medals were: 1939-45 Star, France-Germany Star; War Medal 1945; CVSM & Clasp.

His name is mentioned at the monument in Wagenborgen.