|F/Sgt.||Ian Alfred Helier||Croad|
|Returned Y/N||Evader Fate||Date Captured/Liberated||Place Captured/Liberated||Escape Line|
|Yes||EVD||8 Apr 45||Zutphen||-|
F/Sgt. Ian Alfred Helier Croad was the bomb aimer of Halifax NR251. On the return journey, after bombing Hannover, the bomber was attacked by a night fight. After a second attack only one engine remained, and the pilot therefore gave the order to bail out. Croak landed close to a small station, railway and 'some sort of bungalow' near Nijverdal. After he had hid his parachute, harness and other gear under a little bush, he started walking in southerly direction. He first passed Holten and from there on to Harfsen and Zutphen. Here he hid himself in a haystack at a farm in the early morning of 6 January 1945. That night he knocked on the door of the farm. A man opened the door and Croad said 'Ich bin English'. The man went inside, pulled on a coat, came outside and then took Croad to another, neighboring farm. This farm was the hiding place for at least ten to fifteen refugees. None of them spoke English. After a meal someone arrived with an illegal worker from Zutphen, Peter Jongens. After he had assured himself that Croad was indeed a RAF-airman, he took him by bicycle to a house of Gez. Hetebrij at the Deventerseweg in Zutphen. He stayed here in hiding from probably 8 January until 10 April, two days after the liberation of the town on 8 April 1945. Another helper in Zutphen was L.J. Peters. Croad returned to England via Nijmegen and Gilze-Rijen. From this airfield he flew back to Croydon in England. Ian Croad passed away in March 1991.
|* H.W. Poorterman, Van bezetting naar bevrijding. 1940-1945 in Nijverdal, Hellendoorn, Marle, Haarle, Daarle, Hulsen Eversberg (Enschede 1978), page 42-46
* NIOD, 896, Willemsen, W.J.M, inv.nr. 2, 'I.A.H. Croad'