In 2007 Dixie Dansercour sailed out of Nieuwpoort Harbour aboard a sailing ship bound for the frozen continent. He was retracing the steps of the 19th century Belgian explorer Adrien de Gerlache who led an expedition to Antarctica aboard the Belgica.
To commemorate both expeditions the artist Freddy Cappon made a monumental sculpture entitled “The Artic Explorer”. Dixie Dansercoer was born in Nieuwpoort and was an honorary citizen of the West Flemish coastal town.
Since the announcement of the explorer’s death a week ago the statue has become a focal point for tributes and for people to gather an grieve the lost of the great explorer.
The Mayor of Nieuwpoort Geert Vanden Broucke (Christian democrat) told VRT News that the cards and photographs left behind at the statue won’t be thrown away. The municipal authorities will get together with Dixie Dansercoer’s widows and others that were close to him to decide how the tributes can best be preserved. Mr Vanden Broucke added that there is a chance that a remembrance event for Dixie Dansercoer will be held at some time in the future.
Dangerous trek through Greenland
Dixie Dansercoer died last week during an expedition to Greenland. Together with a Canadian and a Dutch explorer he was attempting to cross the county, a distance of some 2,200 kilometres using a snow kite. He fell through the snow and into a glacier ravine. His body has not been found. However, it is impossible that he could have survived.