Getting to know M.Michiel van der Mey
Maarten Michiel van der Mey (1950), lives with his family in Kleve (Germany) and worked as a representative for the Benelux countries in a German high-tech firm (Spectro Analytical Instruments). Since 2010 he is Managing Director of the Dutch company Greensilver, based in Amsterdam and Greensilver Germany in Kleve (Germany).
He is born and raised in a naval family in the Netherlands, where his parents named him after Holland’s most famous admirals Maarten Harpertszn Tromp and Michiel Adriaanszn de Ruyter. The family roots lay in the Dutch East Indies.
With this background it is an almost natural process that interests in ships and aircraft developed, initially resulting in a box full of photographs and documentation from the pre-war Royal Netherlands Navy. After some time he developed a deep passion for the Dutch Navy’s Dornier Wal flying boat as it mastered the seas and sky as flying frigates over the countless green islands of the wonderful Indonesian archipelago. The latter is the home country of his parents and great, great grandparents from his mother’s side.
His studies and research of the so-called ‘Pisa’- boats (a nickname of the Wal) brought him to Italy, its people, the culture and the language he learned over many years to appreciate deeply.
The long held passion for the flying boats lead to his first successful Dutch book about the Dornier ‘Wal’, in 1987. Meanwhile, ‘collecting’ developed into more research and the dissemination of flying boat information. In 1999 an old film of the Italian Air Force was rediscovered, restored and modified. It is shown regularly all over Europe at whirling presentations about the flying boat combined with other supporting publications, presentations, films and/or b/w slides (in English, German, French, Italian and Dutch) under the umbrella of his ‘Dornier Wal Documentation Center’ (1999).