Germany has always had a tender spot in my heart. I was born in Wiesbaden in
1955 when my dad was stationed there as an Air Force officer. The local German
branch was really struggling, so the military branch and the German branch were
consolidated. My dad served as the branch president--he had to learn German for
his assignment in Germany, so he was fluent. Sacrament meeting was conducted in
English and German. The Americans sang from the English hymnal and the Germans
from the German hymnal. He had a wonderful experience working with the German
Latter-day Saints. This article resonated with me at a very personal level.
Thank you for the article and the pictures.
God bless President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, and the German people.
It seems odd to be honoring soldiers who were trained to kill Americans.
I cannot guess why these soldiers died here in our care; but as the son of a
WWII U.S. Marine and Family of Marines and Service men who have served from the
Revolution through Vietnam, I know my Father would have appreciated and
respected this wonderful gesture of respect for these German Soldiers. I only
wish there was a way to at last take them back home so they could be honored by
their own and rest in peace in their own land as we would want for our own sons.
** "It seems odd to be honoring soldiers who were trained to kill
Americans." **Perhaps, but it also seems like a gesture of
reconciliation among nations that have since become allies and friends. If we as
individual people did that, maybe we would all get along along better as
Shamrock,learn a little about WWI and what the German people were told and
what their soldiers were taught before making such statements, please.Condemn the Kaiser and his generals all you want, but don't rail on the common
foot soldiers who saw there duty no less than how our doughboys saw theirs.
Note that this was mostly a ceremony involving the Germans living amongst us,
not the U.S. Army conducting the event.These POWs were treated
humanely under the Geneva Convention and when they died here, were in the U.S.
Army cemetery as is the custom. Remember, in all wars prior to WW2,
disease caused more deaths among military personnel than battle wounds, so
deaths among POWs were about as common as among American Doughboys in training
It has been about 10 years since I last attended this yearly event. There are
German POW solders from both World Wars buried there and also many Italians and
one Japanese. I do not understand the German language, but the service is a
dignified yearly event.About 6 of the WW2 Germans were machine
gunned one night in their tents by an American camp guard. This event took
place in the Richfield, Utah area.Almost all grave markers appear to
be basic U S Government issue. There is one that is not standard GI type issue
in the Fort Douglas Cemetery. There is one grave marker that includes a
SWASTICA . Someone paid to have a larger grave marker with this symbol on it.
To say the very least, it seems very out of place in an American Military
Cemetery in Salt Lake City, Utah
Thank you for whoever organizes this event and many thanks to Capt. Roth for
officiating for as many years as he has. I think it is a sign of great respect
to honor all soldiers even if at one time they were your enemy. Like "Lost
in DC" said these young German soldiers were fighting for their country
just like our soldiers were. They came from towns small and large, loved their
mothers and sweethearts back home and died all too young far away from their
homes doing their duty. As a related note to quell some of the hatred for
France that many American's have today, do you realize that individual French
families have signed up to watch over and place a wreath or flowers at least
every year on every American grave sin France (Both WWI & WWII) on Memorial
Day. I saw more than a few American flags in the windows of houses in the Meuse
Argonne region of France. Also, the only other flag regularly displayed at the
daily re-lighting of the tomb of the Unknown Soldier ceremony under the Arc de
Triomphe is an American flag. Lets end the hate.