Derek Van den Bogaerde in Hampstead, England, on March 28th.
1921, he was of Dutch descent. In the late 1930s he joined the
army as an officer in Air Photographic Intelligence. His army
career took him to many places, including Normandy where he
saw action, and was the founding of his belief in euthanasia.
After the war, Dirk joined a theatre group from which evolved
a few small parts in films, and then a contract with the Rank
Organisation. He starred in more than sixty films, shocking
everyone in 1961 by starring in "Victim", the story of
homosexual blackmail. This (especially for its time)
controversial film is credited for gaining
support for the decriminalisation of homosexuality in Britain.
In 1988 Dirk had to face the slow painful death of his partner
and manager. He, who had already succumbed to Parkinson's
Disease, developed cancer of the colon which rapidly spread.
They were together for fifty years, from 1938.
Dirk Bogarde accepted the position of Vice President of the
Voluntary Euthanasia Society in England in 1991. He was
knighted in 1992. In 1996 a stroke left Sir Dirk
partially paralysed. He died in 1999.