Operation Manna Commemoration
One of the largest crowds ever to attend a Society function turned out for the Operation Manna commemoration. A good portion of those present were Dutch Canadians from all over southern Alberta. In attendance were several very prominent members of Calgary’s Dutch Community. Two of these were Meika Hollenback and Nick Helwerda, gave an overview of what the Dutch people went through during WWII. They reiterated that the people of the Netherlands would never forget the Canadians who liberated their country.
Nanton’s ex-Lanc pilot Joe English, who flew one of the first Lancasters to drop food, together with Willemina Oosterhuis, a Nanton resident and a former member of the Dutch Underground during WWII, unveiled a painting entitled, “Operation Manna.” A four engine Aurora long-range reconnaissance aircraft from CFB Comox, Vancouver Island, (No. 407 Sqd.) flew over. Culminating the festivities, Alex Bahlsen flew over in a Cessna 180 parachuting 100 miniature loaves of bread, and candies to the awestruck crowd.