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STALAG IIA was situated near Neubrandenburg i. Meckl which today is known as Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania.
I am enclosing a photo of my dad, Coleman G. Davis. Growing up, we knew very little about his war experiences, other than he was in WW2 and was a POW. We know that he traded dog tags with a buddy with the promise that they would mail them to each other once home. My dad mailed the one he had, but he never heard from his buddy. He never even told us his friend's name. Dad refused to discuss anything to do with the war, other than that. My mom said he still had nightmares. It was only after his death in 1999 that we found out that he was in the Battle of the Bulge. He was captured in December, 1944 at St. Vith and was held prisoner at Stalag II A. He served with A company, 81st Engineer Battalion, 106th Infantry Division. We would love to hear from anyone who served with him or knew him.
I am the youngest brother of Leonard Martin, and I'm writing to you as his proxy. What I'm writing here is my recollection of the stories that he has told me.
Leonard joined the U.S. Army at the age of 19 and went ashore at Omaha Beach in 1944. He was in the infantry in the Timberwolf Co. he was on a 2 man heavy machine gun platoon. He was captured by the Germans and sent to a POW camp in Germany. As his memory serves him, he was sent to Stalag 11B, then on to Stalag 2A. Since he was a farm boy from western Washington, he volunteered as a veterinarian to work with the local farmers, that earned him a few extra benefits. He also cut hair for the other POWs for a few cigarettes which he traded for other things since he didn't smoke.
Some of the most heart wrenching and heart warming stories he told me involved the Russian prisoners which were kept at the same Stalag. As he recalls, the Germans so feared the Russian soldiers that they kept them isolated in a separate compound, and treated them very poorly with hardly any rations at all. One such incident was when the Germans gave the Russians a meager ration of gruel, the Russians started fighting over it, and the Germans, not wanting to enter the compound sent in the guard dogs. The Russians threw out the bones of the dogs, having eaten the rest.
Another time was when my brother made contact with a very young (15?) Russian prisoner through the barbed wire fence. The young Russian had made a ring from a steel nut and wanted to trade for American cigarettes, my brother told him that if he filed a hammer and cycle on the ring it was a deal. My brother still has the ring. My brother was liberated by Gen Pattons army on the 13th of April, 1945
My brother Leonard is now 81 years old, but is still active in the VFW and POW organizations. He is currently counceling prisoners in the Washington State prison in Monroe, Washington about being a "prisoner".
My father, Richard Houston, was with the 36th Armored Infantry on the Siegfried Line, when he was captured on Sept. 17, l944. He was at this prison camp until he was released in May of 1945. I know he used to receive Xmas cards from a fellow prisoner, Thomas Babicky, for many years. My father died in 1999, age 80. Would love to hear from anyone who also had a parent at that prison camp. Dad rarely said anything about his experiences there, and my sister & I know very little about his time there. I have 4 letters which he wrote my mother from the prison camp, and they were censored. One of the letters was stamped Stalag II A 41 goprutt. It also says M. -Stammlager II A, Neubrandenburg i. Meckl.
Hope to hear from someone else who was related to someone at this prison camp, or who remembered my dad. I know a few stories I can tell, but not many. My dad was from Chicago, Illinois, if that helps trigger anyone's memory.
List of Prisoners
- Eugene Bliss
- Harold J. Born
- Pvt. James D. Brown. 9th Army, 29th Div., 175th Inf.
- RSM W G Cockaday
- Coleman G. Davis. A company, 81st Engineer Battalion, 106th Infantry Division Read his Story
- Robert L. Eastman. Coy. C., 407th Regt, 102nd Infantry Div. Read his story
- Cecil W Estep
- Charles Cleveland Gardner. Coy. C., 407th Regt, 102nd Infantry Div.
- Ernest V. Hansen. CO, I 109th Inf Reg, 28th Inf Div
- Clifton Harler
- Richard Houston. 36th Armored Infantry. Read his story
- PFC Clyde H. Livengood.
- Pte Frank Lofthouse
- Leonard Martin. Company F. 413th inf. 104th Inf Div. Read his story
- S/Sgt Eugene R. Moody, rear gnr. 306th BG
- Louis Albert Peret
- Eddy Pruden. 16th Para Field Ambulance
- Jesse W. Reno. air gnr.
- Robert Richard. Co. C., 760th Tank Bn Read his story
- Michael Salome. 5th Infantry DivisionRead his story
- Capt Sapsford. RAMC
- Robert Schlesinger (aka Bobby Shaw) 1st para Brigade
- Noel Grover Slay
- Albert Slinkard
- S/Sgt George T. Smith Jr. air gnr. 429th Bombardment Squadron, 2nd Bomb Group, 15th Air Force.
- Sgt Roy K. Synder. tail gnr. 429th Bombardment Squadron, 2nd Bomb Group, 15th Air Force.
If you have any names to add to this list please add their details.
If you have a story which you would like to share, or a website dedicated to a POW camp or prisoner of World War Two please get in touch. Add Your Story
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