BERGEN-OP-ZOOM, Netherlands — A Canadian soldier has found a final resting place 70 years after he was killed during the Second World War.
Pte. Albert Laubenstein died during the Allied advance through the Netherlands, towards the end of the conflict, but his body was buried in a battlefield grave that could not be located after the war.
His remains were discovered last June and were identified through a combination of dental records, historical context and artifacts.
Laubenstein was buried with military honours on Wednesday at the Canadian War Cemetery, some 70 kilometres from where he fought and died in a battle to drive the Germans back east.
Laubenstein, who was born in Saskatoon, was serving in the Lincoln and Welland Regiment at the time of his death.
He had joined the Canadian Army in 1940 and had also served with the 102nd Battalion of the Royal Canadian Artillery, the 4th Light Anti-Aircraft Regiment and the Royal Canadian Infantry Corps.
Laubenstein’s burial was one of the highlights of a week of remembrances and celebrations to mark Canada’s part in the liberation of the Netherlands.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper attended a number of the events and has called those who liberated the Netherlands heroes who understood that some things are worth fighting for.
Some 7,600 Canadians died in the Netherlands while helping to liberate the nation from Nazi oppression.
From the autumn of 1944 right through the next spring, the First Canadian Army played a major role in liberating the Netherlands. The last German soldiers in the Netherlands surrendered on May 5, 1945.
During the war, some members of the Dutch royal family stayed in Canada and many bonds have lasted to this day.