MORTAR GUNNER ON THE EASTERN FRONT: The Memoir of Dr. Hans Rehfeldt -- Volume 1: From the Moscow Winter Offensive to Operation Zitadelle
The diary of a soldier who frequently came close to death but somehow survived. He was awarded numerous honors including the Wound Badge and the Infantry Assault Badge. Includes 100 b/w illustrations.
Following his Abitur (A-levels) in 1940, Rehfeldt volunteered for the Panzer Arm but was trained on the heavy mortar and heavy MG with Grossdeutschland Division. He was on the Front from 1941 fighting for the city of Tula, south of Moscow. Battling in freezing conditions, at its lowest -52 degrees C, the descriptions of the privations are vivid and terrifying. With no winter clothes they resorted to using those taken from Soviet corpses.
In 1942, fighting near Oriel, however, his battalion suffered heavy losses and was disbanded. Ill with frostbitten legs, Rehfeldt was treated in hospital and once recovered was dispatched back to the Front. Following various battles (Werch, Bolchov), his battalion again suffered heavy losses and was merged. In agony from severe frostbite to his legs, Rehfeldt defied the odds and astonished his surgeon when he walked again. He was promoted from Gunner to Trained Private Soldier in 1942, and to Corporal for bravery in the field in 1943.
On 3 May 1945, he was captured by US Forces and held as POW for one month in a camp at Waschow before internment in Holstein from where he was released in July 1945 after agreeing to work on the land. In December 1945, he began studying veterinary medicine: his future career.
NEW-softcover, available mid June 2019 ......$33.00 rct
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Updated as of 9/21/2023ABBREVIATIONS: dj-dust jacket, biblio-bibliography, b/w-black and white, illust-illustrations, b/c-book club addition.
rct - recent arrival or pending publication, spc - OMM Special Price