Family finds American hand grenade while playing in natural park

The playing adventure of a Dutch family living in Renkum took an exiting turn yesterday afternoon. Next to their playing-spot they found an unexploded American hand grenade from WW2.

Due to the lovely weather in The Netherlands a couple took their two boys from 5 and 9 years old to the Renkum Beekdal. A valley between Renkum and Wageningen which is turned into a natural park. Years ago it was a terrain with heavy factories on it until the city decided to turn it around, demolish all, clean the surface and give the valley back to nature. The valley has been developing since and the returning to nature has been a succes.


Next to a waterfall which has been made to let the natural stream follow its course to the river Rhine. The waterfall has become a popular place to play. Undoubtedly bored with sitting at home due to the corona measurements the family decided to go out and play around the water.

They build a dam and because there was sand in the way, they removed some of it to make the water move better. That’s when they found a piece of metal, kinda heavy too. Unrecognisable the father decided to wash it in the water to see what is was. He was shocked when he recognized the object when it was cleaned up. With all cautions he laid the grenade back on the ground, but further away while mum called the emergency line.

First a police officer came to check the grenade and he decided the Explosive Ordinance Disposal (EOD) had to come to dismantle the grenade. That, of course, got the little boys very excited and their mum got a call as soon as the bomb-squad arrived so they could come back and see the explosion.

The best lessons you can get

But when the EOD showed up, the brothers even got to help the officers and together they made the found grenade explode. The very curious brothers were given explanation about what they were about to do before the button was pushed and had some history lessons too.

In The Netherlands they are still very busy cleaning the surface of found ammunition left from the Second World War on a daily basis, so the EOD truck was filled with, already defused, ammunition which they had been collecting that day.

The officers told the two boys it was an American hand grenade they found. One that lost his pin and still never exploded in 75 years. The heavy weight came from the gunpowder still in it and it still could have done some serious damage. But not anymore, thanks to this family.

“It was really nice to see how these men from the EOD took the time to answer my sons questions and showing them everything. That’s gonna be a history lesson they won’t forget.” the mother of the family says “But I dare not to think what would have been happened when my husband and I weren’t around!”

Also read: 121 anti-tank grenades found during archery competition in Doorwerth



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