The Colditz Story (1955)

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    There are 37 replies in this Thread. The last Post () by The Ringo Kid.

    • Re: Classic War Movies- The Colditz Story (1955)

      Hi Carl,
      They were very interesting times. I am pleased that your friend made in safely as the Eastern Front was not a very pleasant place to be in. When I played Football (Soccer) in Munich our team were looked after by some returned German Servicemen and what they had to say was at times horrific. They all served on the Eastern Front. I must admit we were treated like royalty and were well looked after. This was in 1956/7 when I was playing for West London Schoolboys. Please pass on my regards to your friend for a Happy 2009. Another snippet, my Uncle Bill had a farm about a mile from Tangmere aerodrome and I can remember Spitfires, Typhoons and Mosquitos takinf of on raids during the late 1944 and early 1945. We used to count the aircraft as they came back. Again only being 4 - 5 we didn't really understand what was happening although I still remember the different nationalities that were stationed nearby.
      Have a good day
      Regards
      Bill
      RACMP - For the troops With the troops
    • Re: Classic War Movies- The Colditz Story (1955)

      Redcap wrote:

      Hi Carl,
      They were very interesting times. I am pleased that your friend made in safely as the Eastern Front was not a very pleasant place to be in. When I played Football (Soccer) in Munich our team were looked after by some returned German Servicemen and what they had to say was at times horrific. They all served on the Eastern Front. I must admit we were treated like royalty and were well looked after. This was in 1956/7 when I was playing for West London Schoolboys. Please pass on my regards to your friend for a Happy 2009. Another snippet, my Uncle Bill had a farm about a mile from Tangmere aerodrome and I can remember Spitfires, Typhoons and Mosquitos takinf of on raids during the late 1944 and early 1945. We used to count the aircraft as they came back. Again only being 4 - 5 we didn't really understand what was happening although I still remember the different nationalities that were stationed nearby.
      Have a good day
      Regards
      Bill



      Hi Bill, and thank you for more stories. The guys over at www.ww2f.com would absolutely love you being there. We also have several WWII vets who visit and post.

      You are absolutely correct about what you said about the Eastern Front. That place was a different kind of hell to have been in. I know several E.Front Vets-one of whom was captured w/ a small group of men who were trying to escape from Stalingrad. Herr Giehler inparticular-was a Medical Sergeant attached to one of the Regiments in the 3rd Motorized Inf Div. He was captured in Jan or early Feb-43-was finally released in 1955-and was one of those 6,000 to make it back to Germany. He recently retired as a Doctor.
      Es Ist Verboten Mit Gefangenen In Einzelhaft Zu Sprechen..
    • Re: Classic War Movies- The Colditz Story (1955)

      Hi Carl,
      I am glad that your friend was able to retire as a doctor. He certainly had a lot to put up with after the end of the war. I have a lady who works with me in Veterans Support and Advocacy Service and I just found out that her father flew Hurricanes and Spitfires during WW2. He was stationed at Northolt which was about 12 miles from where I lived. He was originally in the Polish Air Force and managed to get to England where he joined the RAF. Krystyna still has his log books and she is going to bring them in to show me. I was also able to tell her where the Polish Memorial is situated as she is going to England in April on a honeymoon, half her luck. Still in V.S.A.S.A. we still have some veterans from WW2, Korea, Vioetnam and East Timor. Some of their tales are hilarious and I thought that we were bad in Vietnam. If Krystyna will allow it I will photocopy some of her father's entries in the log books and pass it on. Talk to you soon.
      Regards
      Bill
      RACMP - For the troops With the troops
    • Re: Classic War Movies- The Colditz Story (1955)

      Redcap wrote:

      Hi Carl,
      I am glad that your friend was able to retire as a doctor. He certainly had a lot to put up with after the end of the war. I have a lady who works with me in Veterans Support and Advocacy Service and I just found out that her father flew Hurricanes and Spitfires during WW2. He was stationed at Northolt which was about 12 miles from where I lived. He was originally in the Polish Air Force and managed to get to England where he joined the RAF. Krystyna still has his log books and she is going to bring them in to show me. I was also able to tell her where the Polish Memorial is situated as she is going to England in April on a honeymoon, half her luck. Still in V.S.A.S.A. we still have some veterans from WW2, Korea, Vioetnam and East Timor. Some of their tales are hilarious and I thought that we were bad in Vietnam. If Krystyna will allow it I will photocopy some of her father's entries in the log books and pass it on. Talk to you soon.
      Regards
      Bill


      Hi Bill, sorry I had not thouht to look into these again since several months ago but--yeah I an glad he chose a civilian career of one that saved lives. I wish I could have some of his stories to tell here. As far as I know-his only child/my friend Susanne-still has yet to get him to tell her anything. I would love to read factual firsthand acounts of what it was like to be a Medic at Stalingrad-and then in primitive Soviet Gulags and such. Many of those 90,000 who surrendered when GFM Friedrich Paulus surrendered the 6th Army-and that never made it back to G erman soil-Mr. Giehler saw many of them die on the road to Gulags, being worked to death, starved, executions and such. Seeing that many of my Comrades die and in horrible ways would have probably made me go insane. I don't know how Mr. Giehler was able to keep his sanity-being a PoW for 12 odd years.

      There are numerous books all in German (of course) that were written about all aspects of things dealing with that battle. If these ever get translated into English-you can bet your boots that many of those stories will be made into movies.
      Es Ist Verboten Mit Gefangenen In Einzelhaft Zu Sprechen..
    • Re: Classic War Movies- The Colditz Story (1955)

      Hi Carl,
      Glad to have you back on deck again. I have missed our little chats. I can understand your friends position as my father was in Burma and even up till he died would not talk about his experiences. Although I did find out he was in The "Chindits" a jungle commando. He gave me some photos which I gave to the Imperial War Musuem in London, they told me that they are to graphic to put on show. I was talking to an ex serviceman, who was in the German Army, he was in North Africa and Italy, and he said that over 60% of his unit that was sent to the Eastern Front did not return. He was lucky that he was in hospital recovering from wounds and considers himself lucky that he was captured by the British Army before he was sent back to his unit. Anyway friend I hope that you like the keyring. It is the badge of the RoyalAustralian Corps of Military Police (RACMP) and the Corps Motto. Talk to you soon.
      Regards
      Bill
      RACMP - For the troops With the troops
    • Re: Classic War Movies- The Colditz Story (1955)

      Hi bill, very sorry for not seeing this to reply in a proper amount of time. I've always had a "thing" for the Chindits as well. If I recall?/ didn't they take part in the fighting at Imphal and Kohima??/ It's been about 20 years since I last read about them and especially over the past 10 or so years-i've been stuck only on the Eastern and Western Front mainly the Eastern Front though ;-)) and my mind is so set on the battles fought there that it seems as if most anything I knew from other areas of the war, have sorta been put into a filing cabinet-locked and the key lost ;-))
      Es Ist Verboten Mit Gefangenen In Einzelhaft Zu Sprechen..
    • Re: Classic War Movies- The Colditz Story (1955)

      Hi Carl,
      Hope that everything is going well for you. Yes the "Chindits" did fight around Imphal and Kohima. My Father actually won the Military Medal at Kohima and also received a battlefield promotion to Sergeant. He was mainly with the Gurkhas and went through to end up releasing some POW's from the Burma - Siam railway. Some of the POW's were actually German interned by the Japanese and forced to work on the railway. One major encounter that my Father took part in was the crossing of the Chindwin River, where neither side took prisoners. Must have been hell on either side. Anyway mate I am really pleased you are on the mend, will talk again soon.
      Best Wishes
      Bill
      RACMP - For the troops With the troops
    • Re: Classic War Movies- The Colditz Story (1955)

      Hi Bill, thank you Mate and, Cheers to you for sharing this story about your Father and Cheers to him as well. Also, i've always had great respect for the Gurkhas too. I met a WWII Gurkha Veteran who happened to be at the same Gun and Militaria show that Brigadier General and Former Flying Tigers Squadron Leader-David Lee "Tex" Hill was at as well as the Enola Gays Navigator-Dutch Van Kirk were at. All three of these Gents were great to "rub elbows" with and I especially enjoyed my time with Dutch van Kirk-who thankfully, is still alive and doing very well. Also, at that same show, I met a German Gent who had been in the Hitler Youth and then transferred into the Luftwaffe-as a Flak Artillery Gunner in 1943. This guy quickly made the rank of Sergeant and was also in charge of a half-section of a Battery of Flak 88s. Anyway, all of these Vets were great to be around, and I wish that I had had more time with that Gurkha Vet but his table was busy with a long line of people wanting his signed photo and a few moments of time with him. I regret that I was unable to get a signed picture of this guy. Even in his upper 80s, you can tell that he could have been the meanest b_____d in the Jungle, and i'd hated to have crossed him as an enemy ;-)) This Vet reminded me alot about my friend and WWII German Vet-also a recipient of the Knights Cross--Herr Remy Schrijnen.

      Also, Orde Wingate has always been my favorite most British General. Sure was sad for him to die in a plane crash-what a great waste of talent.
      Es Ist Verboten Mit Gefangenen In Einzelhaft Zu Sprechen..

      The post was edited 1 time, last by The Ringo Kid ().

    • Re: Classic War Movies- The Colditz Story (1955)

      Hi Carl,
      Thanks Mate, I have served with the Gurkhas myself, so I agree with your view. My father was a great admirer of Wingate and Bill Slim. He always said if it hadn't been for the Gurkhas showing him how to survive in the Jungle he may not have made it home. He was also very pleased to keep in touch with one of the German ex prisoners, unfortunately they both died within two months of each other and both died of cancer. I have lost touch with the German family since I came to Australia and they went to South Africa. Anyway Mate you look after yourself and I will write again soon.
      All the best
      Bill
      RACMP - For the troops With the troops
    • Re: Classic War Movies- The Colditz Story (1955)

      Hi Bill, quite welcome and serving with those guys must have been one heck of a great time to serve. The one Gent I met so impressed me and I hope that ill be lucky to met a few more Gurkhas before they get too disinterested and or physically unable to attend meetings and such. I also like Slim. Between Wingate and Slim, had they been given a little more priority, those Gents woudn't have needed anything from Merrills Marauders ;-)) Im not usually easily impressed with a nations elite force of Soldiers but the Gurkhas, Chindits, and such top the list though. If I were not so engrossed with the war between the Germans and the Russians-i'd be actively seeking any good new books out about Wingate, Slim and the Boys ;-)) Also, when I do get to read soemthing new about the Kokoda Trail, I can never seem to get my fill, of reading about what those men went through. I'd place the kokoda Trail actions up there with the intensity of what the Germans faced on the Eastern Front, as well as the Desert Rats faced at Tobruk, and our guys at the Battle of the Bulge-which says a lot.

      It sure is good to open my mind up more on these other theaters of war once in awhile. I think ill look on the Helion and Aberdeen Book sites to see whats available?
      Take care Bill, and am enjoying that Keychain. It gets a lot of questions when people see it. ;-))

      Oh and if your interested? If you get the chance-I highly suggest you buy a copy of Jason marks book; Island of Fire-which is simple THE BEST book I have ever read that had anything to do with the Battle of Stalingrad. The only thing about this book is that Jason Mark purposely covers the actions of one German Infantry Division and one Russian Rifle Division-and five German Engineer Battalions. This book is one you have to force yourself to put down or you will read all 600+++ pages far too quickly. I read 130 pages during my first sitting and after that limited myself to around 20 pages per day. Oh and, any book you get that is by Jason mark-will be one of the best you will ever read. He's currently working on a boo now-that has to do only or mainly with those five German Pioneer (Engineer) Battalions I mentioned above.

      I asked him some months ago, if he had any plans to do a book about "Pavlovs House?" which was an amazing story in itself even though it was just a minor part for the Battle of Stalingrad. If your now familiar with Pavlov and the fighing at what was to become known as "Pavlovs House" Pavlov was a Sergeant in the Red Army, was in command of a Platoon of Infantry, and who had occupied a multi-storey house. The Germans attacked it I don't know how many times, and they never force Pavlovs men from that structure. At times, Pavlovs men were seperated-meaning the Germans managed to split that tiny force-some being in the Basement, some on the top floor while the Germans were sandwiched in between them. Simply some amazing action took place there.

      I am alos hoping that Mark does a book about the Rolik Group (named after Sergeant Rolik who commanded these men)-which was a tiny group of some 4-8 Russiand who occupied basically small caves or holes in the ground, and they were a commo team the Germans tried everything they could to dislodge them from their holes-and failed miserably.

      Sorry for such a long reply but, when I get started talking about my favorite battle of WWII--I can't stop ;-))

      I forgot to mention that Jason mark is an Australian Author, and who has a website called; www.leapinghorsemanbooks.com or something like that?
      Es Ist Verboten Mit Gefangenen In Einzelhaft Zu Sprechen..

      The post was edited 3 times, last by The Ringo Kid ().

    • Re: Classic War Movies- The Colditz Story (1955)

      Hi Carl,
      I thnk I still have some books on Slim and Wingate and somewhere I have a couple of books on the Chindits and Gurkhas. The one thing I found out with the Gurkhas is, you don't drink the Gurkha Rum. Mind you when they use their Kukri (Knife) you run a mile. Probably in world record time. Glad you like the keyring and that it promotes enquiries. I might have a few more things to send over. I'll get Sharon to send them although I believe she still has a DVD to send to you. Look after yourself and will talk again soon.
      Best Wishes
      Bill
      RACMP - For the troops With the troops
    • Re: Classic War Movies- The Colditz Story (1955)

      Hi bill, thanks for all this too ;-)) I'd like to send you something WWII Military related though its not a vintage item. It will take me probably a month or two to think about doing so because were about to relocate about 150 miles from Houston to Austin-and well be in Austin by the end of November. Ill send you my new address as soon as I get it. What I have that I want to send to you will by Desert Rats related ;-)) Also, I hope things are going good for you and also for Sharon and her little bloke ;-)) I want to send them something for Christmas this year but don't know if I can get it out to them in time? also due to the move not sure if I will have the money to get it out in Dec or not? but ill let you all know.

      Heh heh, i'd almost bet I could run a mile in about 10 seconds had I had to face an angry Gurkha with his knife out of it's scabbard ;-)) I sure wish I had photos of that Gent I had met but, "outside" cameras weren't welcome in the show I met him at, and it didn't dawn on me to take my camera in that restaurant with me-where we had that chance meetings up with him and that Japanese Vet. Both these Gents did nto show their age. The Gurkha Vet looked like he might have been 50-and the Japanese vet looked like a slightly older brother.

      You know, I always get a great feeling and a grin on my face when I see former adversaries get together as friends-as these two Gents did.
      Es Ist Verboten Mit Gefangenen In Einzelhaft Zu Sprechen..
    • Re: Classic War Movies- The Colditz Story (1955)

      Hi Carl,
      I don't send things to my friends for them to return likewise. I am only to pleased to talk to someone who can understand what I and people like me went through in WW2 and Vietnam era. I hope that your move goes well and that everything works out for you. I agree with you that it is nice for old adversaries to get together and forget past differences, but unfortunately there are always a few who want to stir it up again. Sharon and Alec are doing well and with Sharon working late some nights we have Alec stay with us. Barbara, my wife, has no nonsense from him, he certainly knows whose boss, mind you so do I. Take care of yourself mate and I will talk again soon.
      Bill(bud)
      RACMP - For the troops With the troops
    • Re: Classic War Movies- The Colditz Story (1955)

      Hi Bill, thanks Mate. Also, no problem at all if you would allow me to send you something. Over the past few months I have been ever so slowly having some things made for as many friends as I can give stuff to. My former roommate was an Army Platoon Sergeant for 14 years and I had one of my original photos placed on a metal lidded mug for him to drink from at work ;-)) His new roommate is an Airborne Vet and as he has a computer, I figured that he might like a new mouse pad to use, so I had a well-known photo that was taken at Stalingrad-which shows two German Sergeants armed with MP-40 SMGs. I also had a new mouse pad made for myself which has one of my press phiotos on it showing General der Kavallerie: Eberhard von Mackensen with a couple of Officers and NCOs in his command Panzerspahwagon, somewhere on the Eastern Front in 1943 ;-)) What I had in mind or you if you wouldn't mind? is something Desert Rats related ;-)) I got this photo strictly by luck at an auction about 4 or so months ago. It's a great shot of a Desert Rats Mortar Team firing their mortar ;-)) I love this shot. Sadly, it's my only pic of some Desert rats.

      That is too true about soem who want to stir up troubles again and also between past enemies. I see that happening quite often lately over on the www.ww2f.com site.

      Im glad to hear that they as well as yourself, are doing well these days. Im about to go in for my 2nd foot operation on this Friday the 13th. Im looking forward to the operation but not the excrutiating pains in my foot that ill have at least 48 hours after the operation.

      Oh and if I don't get the chance to wish you all a Merry Christmas and HAppy New Years, I want to do that now. Merry Christmas and HAppy New Years ;-))

      Take care Bill, and also thanks for including me in that special club of one who understands. I try to do so as much as possible, and I never get an ending to the kick I get out of meeting Veterans-no matter where they come from ;-))

      I don't know if you guys over there have the same kind of Veterans remembrance days like we have here and as today is Veterans Day-Happy Veterans Day to you as well ;-))

      Sincerely--Carl ;-))

      PS, if I had the knowledge and ability, I would gladly email you that Desert Rats photo I have. A little history on that photo was that this photo was supposedly taken by a German Soldier who I guess either killed or captured the Soldier who had this photo. Well, a well-known photographs dealer located in Florida, recently split apart that mans photographs and this one was one of two Desert Rats photos that the German Soldier allegedly captured. The other photo I remember showed two Desert Rats sitting in the cab of a truck or jeep? and were smiling at the camera. I tried for that photo as well, but lost out on it because someone sniped me on that photo. I still got the best of the two D/R pics though ;-)0 It goes greatly with a nice photo iof a German Mortar team firing their mortar at some Russian position on the Eastern Front. That photo was of men from the German 55th Mortar Battalion-which was an independantly attached unit to some other larger German unit.
      Es Ist Verboten Mit Gefangenen In Einzelhaft Zu Sprechen..
    • Re: Classic War Movies- The Colditz Story (1955)

      Hi Carl,
      Many thanks for your reply. If you like my home e mail is:- [email protected]. I hope that everything went well for you with your foot. Not pleasant. We have three veterans days here and each one is very significant. 25 April is ANZAC Day, 18 August is Vietnam Veterans Day (Also Long Tan Day) and 11 November which is Remembrance Day. So many thanks for wishing me a happy veterans day. On ANZAC Day and Remembrance Day I generally attend a couple of schools and the children love our headdress and medals. At times we almost run out of time. Remembrance probably means more to me, even though I served for over 20 years in the Australian Army, as this day remembers all servicemen/women who were killed or wounded in all conflicts. Look after yourself mate and I will talk again soon. Like you said have a very Merry Christmas and a very Happy and Prosperous New Year
      Best wishes
      Bill
      RACMP - For the troops With the troops

      The post was edited 1 time, last by Redcap ().