Erich Conrad Kempf

Survivor | Date of birth unkown | Employee with the Rubber Restriction Department

Born in Berlin. Employed on ss Frisia (HAPAG company).

1914: enlisted with the Tsingtao militia as naval artillerist. Probably interned in several Japanese camps.

Remarries in Tsingtao on 25 April 1922 with Erika Seidel who is just three years older than Conrad’s daughter Maud from his first marriage.

In the same year he emigrates to NEI and is employed with a sugar factory in Bojong, Java. In 1940 he is registered as civil servant with the Rubber Restriction Department in Pontianak, Kalimantan (Borneo).

In some documents it is mentioned that Kempf originally escaped the round-up of Germans in NEI, by luck or planning. Eventually he did end up on the Van Imhoff and survives the ordeal.

In 1942 he travels to Peking (Beijing) where his daughter Maud lives. She was born on 10 June 1925. She marries Ottokar Peterhaensel (born 28 August 1917) who is the co-owner of a furnishing enterprise.

In the early 1960-ies he is approached by C Van Heekeren together with G Weiler (missionary from Banjarmasin), Albert Vehring (planter in Irian and Java), J Grasshoff (ship steward from Padang), E Fischer (merchant from Surabaya), H. Sack (nurse from Sabang), K Seemann from Banjarmasin and W Schweikert (piano builder from Semarang). They become key witnesses of the sinking of the Van Imhoff, the struggle of the survivors at sea and the landing and follow-up on the island of Nias. Their accounts are reflected in the well-documented study of the Van Imhoff affair by Van Heekeren (Batavia seint: Berlijn, Bert Bakker, Den Haag 1967)

He dies in ?? in ??. His widow, Erika Kempf, settles in Wiesbaden, Germany.

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