Battle of the Bulge
#11

:banghead::heartpump:

 

 

Marion:-

 

Since we have been kicking around the Battle of the Bulge I have been bothered by a lot of lousy recollections but here are two that might interest you and I can say had a happy ending.

 

A close friend of mine from Basic to the Bulge got blown out of a Jeep by a Mortar Shell and most of the damage was to his face and I kid you not this guy was a good looking man. Went back to the Field Hospital to see him and the Charge Nurse pointed out his bunk after I had walked by him twice as he was bandaged like a mummy.

 

Saw him after the war and he pulled my chain because he knew I had walked by him but you could only see his eye,nose and mouth holes in the bandages. It took the Doctors back Stateside 21 months to reconstruct his face and the only evidence was a thin white line that ran from ear to ear. Until I heard him speak and he insulted me as was his usual joking?? way of speaking to my(even though I was his Top) I could/would have walked by him on the street. Told him those GD Irish had hard heads!!! I ought to know!!

___________________________________________________________________

 

The other story involves a Wehrmacht Kraut I was interrogating in a building and following SOP we separated them into different rooms because some Wehrmacht Units had SS embedded in them for Political Reasons and to make them toe the mark but this way they were more apt to speak the truth to us.

 

After we got in the room the Kraut, IN PERFECT ENGLISH WITH A SLIGHT NEW JERSEY ACCENT,asks if he could borrow my Boot Knife which I carried like all the other Intel Guys here did. He said that he needed it to show me something but I cautioned him that any BS and you are TOT(dead).

 

Ever so carefully he inverted his coat and proceeded to cut open a seam and extract a small packet wrapped in some kind of water proof waxed paper. Inside this packet was a Social Security card(beat to hell but still legible) and a drivers license from NJ. He then proceeded to tell me that he had gone back to Germany to go to school and was living with and Aunt and an Uncle when he got drafted and if he didn't report for duty those relatives would be taken away to the Camps.

 

I knew this was out of my league so I got a Captain involved and we kept this Kraut away from the others - boy were they ever curious. Two days later we get the word he is to be transported to England for further questioning but the powers that be were sure he was legit and sure enough a week later we were told he was on a ship back to the States.

 

Remember how the comedian Red Buttons had the line "Strange Things are Happening" well it applied here. Oh by the way he did give us some good data on Krauts units in the area.

____________________________________________________________________

 

Marion see how you can open Pandora's Box??

 

Sgtleo :clappin::clappin:

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#12

Here is an original piece of memorabelia from Bastogne which is being auctioned on ebay now. It's the prayer request/Christmas card from General Patton to the men of the 3rd Army in Dec.'44. Wish I had the dough! :o

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#13

...the flip side with the General's signature*

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#14

:cuss::cuss:

 

Roque:-

 

Here's a photo for you - it will warm your heart - or freeze your arz!!

 

battle_bulgelarge.jpg

 

I still get cold when I look at this picture!! How we did it, I don't know looking back.

 

Sgtleo :coffee::coffee:

Sgtleo, only one thing different, NO TREES WHERE I WUZ AT. AND YOU'RE RIGHT IT DIDN'T WARM MY HEART BUT MY A-- WUZ COLD! Thanks, it did bring back memories. Rocky :pdt:

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#15

Easy to look at it as I lay in bed with flannel sheets and a big warm comforter and two pillows with central heating. Can't imagine sleeping, working, fighting, eating and peeing in that for weeks on end. Brrrrrr! :unsure:

Peeeeing were'nt bad but releiving yourself was a might disturbing. Rocky :pdt::pdt::pdt:

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#16

:banghead:  :banghead:

 

Marion:-

 

If this posting is too gross please feel free to delete it. Comparing my posting vs. yours reminded me of a truly serious problem I had that affected my men.

 

For several reasons, I had certain men that were prone to having the dysentery in the setting that the above picture portrays. One guy managed to get extra Long-Johns and wore them at the same time to "contain the problem".

 

What none of us knew,until our Medic(s)(God Bless Him/Them) pointed out after the fact, that the soiled Long-Johns would freeze and compound the problem(s). The guy above had to be sent back due to the fact that the act of freezing to his body created another serious problem that required Medical attention.

 

Would you believe that I had to argue and give him a direct order (surprised he obeyed it)to get him to go back to a Field Hospital for treatment? He actually went AWOL from the hospital and came back up on his own because he was afraid he was letting the rest of the squad down!!

 

I say this in all sincerity, what you described doing last night was the dream of almost every guy on the line. There were times when some of us felt we would never be warm again.

 

As I said above,I don't know how today, we ever did that back in those days!! Sorry if I got maudlin.

 

Sgtleo

Sgtleo, We were 19,20 20+ then, our minds and our bodies could handle it but I agree with you there were maybe one or two that could'nt. NONCOM's had to make some tough decisions sometimes, except the T5's. Rocky Iron hands,! Sgtleo it's a wonder we got hands now!!!

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#17

Ever so carefully he inverted his coat and proceeded to cut open a seam and extract a small packet wrapped in some kind of water proof waxed paper. Inside this packet was a Social Security card(beat to hell but still legible) and a drivers license from NJ. He then proceeded to tell me that he had gone back to Germany to go to school and was living with and Aunt and an Uncle when he got drafted and if he didn't report for duty those relatives would be taken away to the Camps.

Happy New Year to you all and thanks to Buddy's like you Sgtleo, roque, Al, Art and all the others a free one :drinkin:

 

What you wrote about the young men is true this counted for the Luxemburgish youth too.

In late 1942 the Gauleiter Simon started conscripting the Lux youth into the RAD (German Labor Service) and the Wehrmacht, when you got your conscription order and you didn't comply then your Parents Brother sister etc. were deported with you!

 

What would you do in such a situation?

Well you put on the hated Feldgrau (Fieldgrey) Uniform that's it what you'll do. :pdt33:

A lot of the those young men died for the Goddamn Gefreiter in Russia.

In 2001 my Dad my Brother myself and Roby, Roby was one of this men who were forced into the Wehrmacht, so we were sitting at the terrace of a bar vis-à-vis the Pegasus Bridge in Normandy drinking some beer and it was already late around 11pm.

Normally they never talk about that what they went through (I think that's a big Fault) but Roby told us some of his experiences.

He was a Granatrohr Träger (Grenade launcher Pipe Carrier) and always around 400 meters behind the front line in Stalingrad, at day time you could not go out of your trench not even take a look out of it when you did you were dead because of the very effective Russian snipers.

If you had too pee you had to do it in the trench, you could get your food and water only at Night.

 

He told us that one day his superior (A real Nazi) didn't watch out and got a bullet right in the back of his Head, Roby said that were a greta relief for him because he was the only Luxemburger in the group and it was always on him to do the bad job and dangerous jobs.

 

One day a grenade fell in their trench and he was wounded in his left calf ( He showed us the wound the calf has only half the size of the right one and was black and he must wear a spezial sock since then) , after he got out of the Lazarett he got a permission to go home

for a few days to see his family.

 

After he was back in Luxembourg he went awol he was hidden with other awol's in Lux. City.

 

In the first days of his forced enlistement he went too Nederland by Train and they had to wait several days for their Train to Germany and one day the germans were loading Wagons with Jews and when the last wagon were full of Jews the Germans shot the Jews left on the platform by MG42 :pdt33:

 

I have read a lot of books about WWII over a half dozen about the Camps and the killing of the jews Gypsies etc. to read is one thing but to hear such thing from one who lived it is a completly different thing and I'll never understand why they did that.

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#18

:help::help::help::help:

 

To All Who Read My Posting about the man with the concealed US Documents:-

 

I honestly thought that there would be at least one person(including you Maid Marion) who would ask a question(s) which I will reveal in a short time.

 

Maybe it was my training and/or maybe you were unaware of certain facts that the question was expected but not asked.

 

Rennog came up with part of the data and that surprised me because I didn't think others younger than us would know factually that had happened.

 

Not being a wise arz but having been reflecting on the past recently more so than previously. Cannot believe that a year ago New Year's Eve we buried my "Tin Can Sailor" brother.

 

Sgtleo :joker:

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#19

Sgt. Leo. Yes, I do use the work Kraut also as you know instead of Gemans in most posts. Guess it is a old habit. I dont see anything wrong wrong with it, same as you use the work Kraut in reference to Germn soldiers. From what I heard "way back"

on telephone or radio "Germans and Shermans" (tanks) sounded too much alike and

could cause confusion. in directing fire. And Fred, your quote (bad as it seems) : "If I can manage to get the enough free time,and I'm sure Joe and Roque will bear me out,I'll tell you how hard it was to unbutton your coat or to unbuckle your cartridge belt with fingers of iron. In some instances,a normal body function became a major project to perform". How damn true to life. That '44-'45 winter was a real bad winter. But we

had to endure with it. Talk about one cold azzed winter. But life had to go on.

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#20

Incredible stories from all and I thank all of you from the bottom of my :heartpump: for telling them here. I know that many of these are painful to recall, so it means even more to me.

Marion J Chard
Proud Daughter of Walter (Monday) Poniedzialek
540th Engineer Combat Regiment, 2833rd Bn, H&S Co, 4th Platoon
There's "No Bridge Too Far"
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