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80 Years After Jewish Man’s Death At Concentration Camp, His Most Prized Possession Is Returned To His Family

A new report from the Daily Wire details the incredible story of how a watch that was once owned by a Dutch Jew — which was stolen by Nazis during the Second World War — has finally been returned to his descendants, in actual working order, after being missing for 80 years.

It’s nice to have good news every once in a while, isn’t it?

According to the report, “In 1910, Alfred Overstrijd a Jewish man living in Rotterdam, Netherlands, made a watch for his brother Louis and gave it to him on his 18th birthday, The New York Times reported. More than thirty years later, after the German army invaded the Netherlands, Nazi soldiers arrested Louis. That’s when a Dutch historian believes the Nazis took the watch before sending both Overstrijd brothers to Auschwitz — where Alfred would be murdered during the Holocaust.”

Alfred’s grandson, Richard van Ameijden, was very emotional after receiving the watch that was stolen from his family before they were killed in the Holocaust.

“I think it’s really beautiful and remarkable that this all came together,” he went on to say.

“It came right out of the blue,” he then stated.

According to the Times report, after the Nazis stole the watch, it ended up in a cornfield and was then hidden in a farmhouse clock in Belgium. Rob Snijders, who works as a historian, has developed a theory for how the watch managed to travel so far.

“During the war, people across Belgium and the Netherlands were forced to accommodate Nazi soldiers,” the Times report said. “A Belgian farmer named Gustave Janssens housed three soldiers and, unhappy about the situation, made them use a cornfield next door as a bathroom. It’s likely that the watch fell from the pocket of one of the soldiers in the field, Mr. Snijders said.”

Here are more details from the Daily Wire:

Snijders then believes the farmer housing the Nazis found the watch and saw it belonged the inscription on the back which stated it belonged to Overstrijd. The farmer didn’t give the watch back but instead hid it in his clock. The watch stayed there for the next 80 years.

When the farmhouse was recently sold, the farmer’s grandson, Pieter, found the watch hidden in the clock. The grandson then emailed Snijders asking for help to find the original owner. Snijders posted information about the watch on social media and within 24 hours, Snijders had a lead on who it belonged to.

Snijders planned to meet with van Ameijden and his relatives after finding him on LinkedIn, and he gave the watch back to the family. Van Ameijden told the Times that he would share the watch with his sisters and noted that they were all sad that their mother was not alive to share the possession with them. The living descendants of the Overstrijd brothers said they don’t know much about their ancestors’ stories, but now they have a piece of family history to remember them by.

“There were tears, I saw them,” Snijders stated after the meeting took place.

This is an incredible story. God is in control, folks. He has a plan. And while we may not understand His way of doing things, at least we know that He’s ultimately the one calling the shots.

This story syndicated with permission from Chad Prather