The diary of Ko Kolijn

Fragments from a war diary

In the week before the 4th and 5th of May we post a daily entry from the diary of Ko Kolijn. Experience the end of World War 2 through the eyes of a young man from Purmerend in the Netherlands.

april 28 1945


The historical meet up between the Allied armies has happened Thursday afternoon at 20 to 5 at Torgau. The main forces have not reached each other yet. However patrols of both sides have already met!!! They are now 20 kilometers apart west of Berlin.

april 29 1945

The weather is a bit better than yesterday

According to Lt. Gen. Van Ditmar, the spokesman of the German government, who surrendered voluntarily yesterday, the battle in Berlin will not last more than 5 days. And when Berlin falls the war should be over in a few days!!

april 30 1945


Bernadotte, commander of the Swedish Red Cross is leading the negotiations concerning the surrender between Germany and the Allied Forces (so it’s true after all!). The English newspapers expect the end of the war today or tomorrow.

may 1 1945

Rainy, but better then yesterday!

Bernadotte has arrived in Kopenhagen. He is going to Sweden now and not visiting Himmler. Although he has not made any statements the suspicion is he is carrying the offer of surrender with him.

may 2 1945

Precarious weather

Adolf Hitler, the fürher of the German people is dead!!! Admiral Dönitz has been named his successor. He has declared he is forced to continue the fight to save Germany from the Russian danger.

may 3 1945

Rain. Cold. Sunshine.

Berlin has fallen. Rostock, Lübeck, Hamburg and Wismar also. At the Baltic Sea near Wismar contact between the Russian and the Allied forces. They are now together from the Baltic Sea to Dresden with the exception of some small parts.

may 4 1945

Bad weather

Kiel, Flensburg and Salzburg have fallen. Prague has been declared an open city. The German - Danish has been crossed. Also the Ijsselmeer is now open for food transports.

may 5 1945

Good weather

This morning around 6.45 we were woken by noise at the front door. I jumped out of bed, threw open the window and asked what was going on. The people at the door shouted “The war is over!”.