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Normandy; If stones could speak...

Article about: Taken from a brochure The German War Graves - Normandy, Orglandes If stones could speak.... Mont-de-Huisnes; One of 11,956 victims Edmund Baton from Lauterbach (Saar) was evacuated with othe

  1. #1

    Default Normandy; If stones could speak...

    Taken from a brochure The German War Graves - Normandy, Orglandes

    If stones could speak....


    One of 11,956 victims
    Edmund Baton from Lauterbach (Saar) was evacuated with other pupils from his grammar school in February 1945 to the safer Bad Reichenhall because of the approaching front.
    But, without the knowledge of his family, he set out again with a school comrade for home. The pair came first to Ludwigsburg, near Stuttgart. There, they had to hide themselves for eight days because of the heavy fighting.
    Edmund was able to convince the Americain soldiers to take them with them over the Rhine to Strasburg. From there, the two intended to travel home with the train, but were arrested on the way to the station (presumably by the French, or the American military police).
    They were brought over across France to Poitiers.
    There Edmund Baton, only 14 years old, died in a internment camp on the 14th July 1945, of hunger.
    His grave: Crypt 59, Grave number 90.

    Orglandes: 22 of the 10,152 victims
    One stone bears 22 names. The date of death is the same for all names: 25th October 1945. Over five months after the end of the war, German soldiers were still dying - this time as prisoners of war.
    It is apparent from the death report of the 24 year old Corporal Werner Sorge that the 22 men lost their lives in a dynamite explosion in Asnieres-en-Bessin near Bayeux. It is suspected that the men belonged to a mine-clearing commando.
    Their bones could not be separated and are burried in Block 27, Row 13, Grave 420/421.

    La Cambe: One of the 21,115 victims
    "Cruel Fate"
    The German prisoner of war Heinz Gnibl was to be released from Rubercy (near Treviers) on 25th March 1949, and allowed to return home.
    Since his train did not leave until the afternoon, he wanted to take the opportunity to do a favour for the caretaker of his lodgings, by burning old leaves and twigs. He lost his life in the explosion of a shell buried in the earth under the leaves.
    Block 18, Grave 352-353

    Marigny: One of 11,169 victims, Later identified.
    On the 4th August 1944, in the region of St. Gregoire, the 37 yer old Karl Kreller from Nuremberg was serverely wouned in the back by the detonation of a grenade, and died.
    Because of the rapid advance of the adversary he was first buried in the graveyard of St. Gregoire as unknown, then transferred by the American Graves Service to St. James, and on the 3rd June 1957 relocated by the Commission from there to Maringny. Karl Kreller was indentified on the 24th July 1970 with the help of information from his widow. It was possible to distinguish him from the other unknown soldiers by the shoe inlays which were found with him.
    Block 4, Row 45, Grave 1,754.

    St. Desir-de-Lisieux:
    Two of 3,735 victims.
    "Hans and Werner Baumann"
    On the 9th August 1944 Hans Baumann (19), 2nd Company, Pioneer Battalion 189, lay in position with his group by a machine-gun emplacemant in the vicinity of Falaise. A shell struck. He and two other soldiers were killed immediatley and were buried on the same day next to Quesnay Castle. Since the relocation Hans Baumann rests in Block 3, Row 22, Grave 697.
    Werner Baumann (18) fell on 16th August 1944 in Le Bu-sur-Rouvres and was buried there as unknown. The German War Graves Commission was later able to indetify him.
    Block 3, Row 42, Grave 1,304.

    Champigny-St. Andre: one of 19,809 victims.
    "A pilot does not return"
    15th June 1944: Warrant Officer Alfred Günther's Focke-Wulf 190 did not return from its mission in the Bayeux-Cean area. Eye-witnesses reported a dog-fight in which his plane was shot down. Aeroplane parts and bones were recovered from the river Loiret near St. Hilaire - St. Mesnil in 1973. The indentity disc was not found until 1990. In 1992, his wife visited the grave for the first time.
    Block 13, Grave 281.

  2. #2


    Wow, sobering...

  3. #3


    Sad stories.

    Still plenty of soldiers/others out there to be recovered and reburied with their comrades/families.

  4. #4


    fantastic insight into history,, thank you,,

  5. #5


    very sad.

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