On 16 June 1943, occupation authorities interrupted a lecture to seize Jean Pierre Catherine.
A student at Caen’s Merchant Navy School, in 1940 Catherine had formed a small resistance cell that merged a year later with the larger “Front National” network. Working in secret, Catherine and other young people distributed pamphlets and newspapers, hid weapons, and assisted others threatened by the occupiers to conceal themselves.
Following the capture of a liaison officer, Jean Pierre Catherine was arrested. First transferred to the fort of Romainville, and then to the prison of Fresnes, Catherine was subsequently deported to the camps of Struthof-Natzweiler, Gross Rosen, Dora, and Nordhausen. There, during the night of 20 March 1945, at the age of nineteen – three weeks before the liberation of the Nordhausen camp by American troops – he died.