Losing your father in any war is a big loss that can leave an emptiness in your heart forever. Just ask Robin Ashby, who lost his WWII dad, Kenneth, when he was just a kid. But the past has a way of coming back to haunt you and in this case, that was actually a good thing. When Kenneth lost his life, he left something behind that made its way back to his son several decades later, and it brought tears of sadness and overwhelming joy, and he owes it all to a Dutch Family who had guarded the fallen soldier’s wallet full of hidden treasures and then decided to seek out his descendants and return it to the rightful owners.Just ask British soldier, Kenneth Ashby who lost his wallet in the Netherlands in 1945
Well for Kenneth’s son, Robin, the emotions were overwhelming when another man’s family, including his granddaughters, Jasmijn and Myrthe, traveled from their home in the Netherlands to personally hand deliver the wallet to him.
It had been missing since Ashby had been stationed in the south-eastern Netherlands town of Haelen.
Inside it, Robin Ashby found a number of his dad’s personal effects, including a bunch of old photographs.
It allowed him to reconnect and learn more about his late father, who died in 1968, when Robin was just a teenager.
The wallet had somehow made it into the hands of an elderly man who passed it on to a pensioned named Frits Van Horne over 25 years ago.
The first step was using the name on the license to trace him to a cemetery in Godalming, Surrey, where Ashby was interred.
This led to Robin phoning the Dutch family and inviting them to drive over to England to return the wallet in person.
But Kenneth Ashby’s photographs, embroidered handkerchief, a rabbit’s foot, and a small Union flag are priceless to his son Robin and he is immensely grateful to the Van Hornes for allowing him to reconnect with his father, even if its only in memory.