Archives of Adrien Fache

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  • Research instruments: Inventory AA2237

Archive fonds description :

Archives Adrien Fache

The archives of Adrien Fache contain a number of documents about himself, a manuscript and many notes about the organisation of the Military intelligence services Bravery, Brise-Botte and ZIG, as well as personal souvenirs, correspondence, and documentation for the drafting of a publication and copies of messages sent by the State Security in London in March 1942 after the Liberation.

Adrien Valère Joseph Fache was born in Mouscron on 24 December 1920. He attended primary school at Collège Saint-Joseph in Mouscron and graduated in 1938. At this school he met abbot De Neckere who would be of great support for him when his father died. At the same time, they fostered a relationship of trust which would be beneficial for their future common engagement in the Resistance.

In spring 1939, Adrien Fache got drafted for military service which he accomplished at the 3rd company of the school of hunters on foot of Tournai. When the war broke out, he did not get directly involved in war action, but his company was bombarded. Several of his friends died. He ended up in a prisoner transit camp in the Netherlands. As his identity card was issued in two languages, he was considered as a Flemish citizen by the Belgian military in charge of sorting the prisoners, and eventually demobilised.

When he returned to a civil occupation, he joined his brother who was an architect. This is where he heard of the resistance for the first time at a meeting between his brother and a former officer who came to talk about a potential regrouping of former military men. He then took the decision to join the resistance.

He was imprisoned for the first time on 21 July 1941 for having participated in the patriotic manifestation in Mouscron and remained in custody until the end of October. When he got out of prison, he decided to spend all of his time supporting the resistance, in particular the clandestine press and the intelligence services. Thanks to various accomplices, he managed to escape from forced labour.

He was arrested a second time on 29 March 1944 for helping an American pilot, imprisoned in Ghent and sentenced to death on 3 June 1944 by the Campaign Tribunal of Bruges. After having been transferred from prison to prison starting in Saint-Gilles and ending in Bayreuth-Amberg, he was eventually liberated there on 13 May 1945.

He holds many Belgian honorary distinctions and was awarded the French Commemorative Medal of the War 1939-1945, and he was made Captain A.R.A. as head of service ZIG A.

Upon his return to civil life, he got involved in many patriotic associations of former resistance fighters, war prisoners, veterans and in the Scouts movement.

For more information :

  • Dirk Luyten, Réfractaire au travail obligatoire sur Belgium WWII
  • Bernard Henri, La Résistance 1940-1945, Bruxelles : La Renaissance du Livre, 1969.
  • Le livre d’or de la résistance en Belgique, Bruxelles : M.D.N., 1948.
  • Tanham George K., Contribution à l'histoire de la résistance belge, 1940-1944, Bruxelles : Presses universitaires de Bruxelles, 1971.