Amazing story indeed. I've heard many recollections from veterans of WW2 and all of them beyond belief. When I was a schoolboy (in England) my Math Teacher was in the real "Great Escape" in 1944 and told us boys stories to make your hair stand up ! But when he told us of the Germans making an "example" of repeat escapees his eyes were full of the horrors of war. Then we'd get back to the Math lesson. "Tomorrow we'll found out how we hid the guard dogs!"
Whitney. I was just emailing TravelRob. Maybe you could contact a TV station here in England. The Centenary of WW1 is big news across Europe this year 1914 - 1918 and we have many programmes looking back at all the wars since. Have you seen the "Great Escape" Movie. ( Steve McQueen - James Garner and all ) ? Some facts are true - some "based" on the true story. It's very late here in England. Contact you tomorrow.
As you've seen in the Great Escape, taking prisoners into the forest and killing them wasn't just a Russian idea. It was used against the Allied POWs by the SS. But there were many allied airmen shot down over Germany who returned home after the war with life saving surgery by the "enemy" Metal plates fitted to the skull where the bone had been shot away I remember. Shall I send an email to your website Whitney ?
Just to add a note: on our way to Mont-Saint-Michel this morning, we noticed signs pointing to a Deutschesoldatenfriedhof, or German Soldiers' Cemetery. Curiosity took us to it and we were surprised by its story. It was constructed in 1961 for reburial of soldiers who had been buried in small locations all over Normandy, the Channel Islands and other nearby areas. It is a solemn place, and quiet, and the spirit expressed in the signs and in the design was one of reconciliation and hope for...
Paul, Thanks for that note about the German cemetery in France. I may make a trip to several of these war cemeteries on my next trip overseas. I just heard from the German War Graves Commission this morning with more photos of Reiner's grave.
" To be honest, I no longer try to calculate how things are going to turn out in this war. No one is going to escape unscathed. One must not be miserly with the little life that we have. Those who are anxious and fearful, they will be struck first....
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