Tom Applewhite and Jockey Wiggins could never forget “Diane” (Amanda Stassart) because of the quick wit that she showed in preventing them from being exposed as escaping Allied airmen as she took them on a tram to the French city of Lille. After the war, she went to work for Sabena Airlines:
Fortunately, their reunion in 1948 resulted in some fine photos:
Telegram from Hoyt S. Vandenburg, Chief of Staff, U.S. Air Force, to Amanda Stassart:
Tom Applewhite invited Amanda Stassart and Jockey Wiggins to be guests at his home in Memphis, Tennessee. The following article, along with the photo shown above, appeared in The Commercial Appeal of Memphis:
The people of Memphis gave Amanda a royal welcome. In a letter dated December 8, 1948, apparently to an official of Sabena Airlines, Tom wrote as follows:
“I would like to express my appreciation for your kindness in allowing Amanda to visit my mother and me. Everyone here, as in New York, fell promptly in love with her. I believe mother would have shipped both Jockey Wiggins and me back to Sabena if she could have kept Amanda. She would have made the better of a bargain in that event.
“You would have been very proud if you could have seen the kindness and tact of Miss Stassart. She chatted with the homesick Belgian war brides who telephoned her, made a trip to visit an elderly Belgian lady now living in Memphis and agreed to carry messages to her friends in Belgium, and made all of the bachelor friends of mine resolve to stay bachelors until Sabena opened a branch in Memphis.”
Talk by Amanda Stassart
To see a talk in French given by Amanda Stassart to young people, click on http://vimeo.com/31155536. It is also available at http://www.gedenkbuch-wuppertal.de/en/node/3345. An airlines article about her is available at http://www.vieillestiges.be/files/vtb-magazines/1-2012.pdf.
Report by Amanda Stassart
See the attached report by Amanda Stassart or her aid to Allied airmen written after her return from the concentration camps