4 airmen found a way                             På dansk                                 Updated:  12 MAR 2010

On 17 August 1944 LAN PA988 crashed near Allindemagle (here). Walter, Budd, Rafter and Wiens managed to reach Sweden.
Many Danes helped them! See their story as told by Anders Bjørnvad in
De fandt en vej (They found a way p.156-160) See places in Google Map p344.

"On 27 and 28 August the group »Speditørerne« ("the shipping agents") took the 4 Canadian airmen Walter, Budd, Rafter and Wiens to Sweden.
It was a fortnight before the 2 airmen from Farsø (from LAN PB436) were taken across the Øresund to Sweden. After Lieutenant Kiær in May 1944 had been taken
at sea by the Germans the route got the new name Øresundstjenesten ("the Sound Service"). Passengers and mail were taken aboard ships in Danish harbours.
On the way they met smaller ships that sailed out from Sweden. The day-to-day business was run by Detective Inspector Ejnar Andersen.

A total of 15 allied airmen were transferred to Sweden by "the shipping agents" via "the Sound Service". The 4 airmen just mentioned were all from the same plane.
It was hit by a German night fighter on 17 August on the return flight from Stettin. All 7 airmen bailed out north of Ringsted at an altitude of 4 km. Let us see how
these 4 Canadians came to Sweden.

Those boys from the large woodland on the other side of the Atlantic were gallant lads.

And it is not pure coincidence that the 2 first airmen we followed to Sweden were Canadians.

At about 7.30 a.m. Pilot Bruce Walter entered Leo Larsson´s kitchen. He lived next to the farm Allindemagle-gården, where he was a gamekeeper. The stranger
handed over a 9 mm revolver, and when Larsson on his pullover saw a badge saying CANADA he immediately realised that he must be a surviving airman from the
plane he had seen crash nearby 5 hours earlier.

His wounds were dressed and he was put in Larsson's bed. A little later he cried when Larsson told him that a killed airman had been found near the wreckage of
the plane. (It was Musgrave).

Then Larsson called factory owner Risom in Copenhagen and asked him if he would come for a hunt. Larsson had an idea that Risom might have the right contacts. Risom said he wouldn't! Then Larsson told him that he had to come!

Risom then accepted to go by train to Ringsted, where Larsson would meet him. On his way to Ringsted Larsson passed a German road block, and as it was his impression that the Germans were on the move he made a phone call to his wife. She was told to place the airman in the pheasants pen, which she immediately

The Germans carried out a search at Larsson's neighbour's. When they had completed their search they settled just on the other side of the fence where the airman
was lying. Nothing happened. The Germans left shortly after without visiting the Larssons.

Risom stayed in Allindemagle for the night. The next day Walter had a suit of clothes from Larsson. It just fitted. Both of them were big fellows.

The journey went on to Ringsted Railway Station. Larsson and Risom were in front on their bikes and about 100 m behind them Walter came on Mrs. Larsson's
bicycle. If the two took their hats off to say Hello, Walter was to disappear immediately, but fortunately there was no need to lift the hats. Without problems Risom
and the airman came to Copenhagen where he was handed over to people from "the Sound Service". When Larsson came home from Ringsted he saw an airman
being captured by the Germans a few hundred metres from his home. He was very annoyed!

Denis Budd landed north of Ringsted. Then he came by truck to the area near Roskilde.

Police Sergeant Magnus Nielsen was called by a farm owner. Would the police would come and fetch an English airman? Magnus Nielsen drove to the farm and got
hold of the stranger. Then the airman was taken to Roskilde, where he stayed at general manager Poul Tholstrup's.

A couple of days later Magnus Nielsen drove the airman to Copenhagen. He stayed at wireless operator Tage Fischer Holst's. This had been arranged in Roskilde,
where Fischer Holst had paid a visit.

Budd stayed at Fischer Holst's for about a week. He told Holst that his foot had stuck to something when he bailed out. He solved the problem by slipping out of the boot.
They cycled through the Deer Park and visited the terrace at Bellevue Strandhotel. Here they sat next to several German officers.

On  27 August Budd was picked up and transported across the Øresund.

We just heard that Walter and Budd reached Copenhagen a few days after the crash. Here they told about their mates, presumably still at large. "The shipping agents" then passed the word that there were wanderers to look for.

In Helsingør Detective Inspector Aksel Petersen, 25 Stubbedamsvej was notified that airmen were at large. Before May 1944 he had been associated with Lieutenant Kiær's route.

When Kiær was arrested, Aksel Petersen joined "the shipping agents", his main assignment being the transport of mail mail to Sweden via the ferries. After 19
September 1944 he was directly connected with "the shipping agents" in Copenhagen. Like so many other police officers he had to go underground after the German arrest of the Danish Police.
On 17 April 1945 Aksel Petersen was sent to Sweden, as his son Knud Petersen, 19!, had been executed by the Germans as a saboteur on 11 April.

We know that Leo Larsson had seen an airman being captured, and later another airman was captured by the Germans. Now only 2 airmen were at large! Rafter and Wiens were heading for Helsingør!

After his lucky landing Rafter heard the noise from engines of the other planes now on the return flight to England. He had no idea where he had landed. For the time being he felt extremely lonely. All airmen in a situation similar to Rafter's felt the same. His feeling of loneliness was overwhelming! You may have to have tried the situation, if you really want to put yourself in the airmen's place.

After he had collected himself Rafter hid in a haystack for two days. On the third day he went to a farm where he was told that he was in Sjælland, near Store
Merløse. Rafter had something to eat, but he refused an offer of plain clothes. If he kept wearing his uniform, the Germans would not be able to shoot him as a spy.

Rafter left the farm and headed for Roskilde. With the coat of the uniform over his arm he went to a barber's to get rid of his beard of 4 days. The barber was a bit
surprised, but he did not say a word. He picked the pay from Rafter's hand.

For the next three days Rafter walked to the north east. He headed for Helsingør, where he thought he might get a boat and sail to Sweden. In Helsingør Rafter
singled out a house in a lonely place behind trees. Here he took courage and rang the bell. The house was no. 93. The place was Stubbedamsvej! A lady opened
the door, Mrs. Ellen Ulmer. The airman entered the house. Shortly after her son Erling Ulmer walked to 25 Stubbedamsvej, Aksel Petersen's residence.

Then Aksel Petersen took care of the airman, but with 4 small children in the house he did not dare to let the airman stay in his house. Therefore he procured accomodation in the town. Shortly after Rafter was sent to "the shipping agents" in Copenhagen.

A couple of days later Aksel Petersen got a message from manager Manuel Andres in Hellebæk. He had a Canadian airman whom he would like to pass on.
It was the airman Wiens who had hit the north coast of Sjælland a bit more to the west than Rafter. Aksel Petersen also procured accomodation for Wiens -
and transport to Sweden.

The four rescued airmen themselves made efforts to avoid being captured by the Germans, and they had good luck - the luck that no airman at any time could do without!