WWII MEMORIES

Information for Veterans and their families


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Select the letter of the alphabet from the list below to view requests for help concerning that surname, location or camp.

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Nergaard, Harry
Newall, Cyril
New York Daily News
Nicholls, George Albert
Nicholls, Harry
Nickel, John
Nield, Vincent Patrick
Norton, James


Oflag X11B, Hadamar
O'Hagan, John
O'Mahony, Sean (or O'Mahoney)
O'Neill, Robert Edward
O'Neill, Weymeth
Nurse, Herbert
Operation Harpoon
Ord, Ronald
Osborn, Frederick Lawrence
Osborn, James Frederick
Osborn, Henry
Owen, James Henry
Owen, Nelson Robert
Oyler, Burless Jean

Oflag X11B, Hadamar

PJ Brooke-Taylor is after any information on this PoW camp. There was a Stalag X11A at Limburg which is about 10 minutes from Hadamar by car. If you have any information on this camp or indeed were a PoW there, please contact PJ via this site using the contact form.

Oflag X11B Hadamar
Major CC Johansen

PJ gave some further information to Julian Verity. She says "My Father, Major CC Johansen, 27th Machine Gun Btn. NZ2EF was POW in Oflag X11b Sept.'43 until March '45. He was in room 25b.

I have visited the ex POW camp. As a result of that visit (which came about as a promise I made him years ago) I began researching his war history, and in fact wrote a book, privately published, for members of my family and other interested parties.

However, after I'd done that, with further digging, I have discovered quite a number of other people around the globe who's Dad's were also there at Hadamar. I guess you can call it "The Hadamar Kids Club!"

At some stage I will be re-writing the book because so much more information has come to light, especially his years as a POW.

So, yes, your Father's chapter would be of huge interest if you can somehow forward the info to me...
Attached are some photos of Oflag X11b, as well as one of Dad with his POW number."

April 2009

Heard from Julian Verity who says "My late father, Capt Martin Verity, Welch Regt wrote a small war diary. He was a POW at Oflag X11B and a chapter is devoted to his stay at Hadamar. I have somewhere an actual grainy black and white photo of him holding his POW Camp number with I suspect the Hadamar Hospital visible in the backgound."

April 2009

Heard from Jim McCarter who says "My father, Lt Col. Lewis McCarter, was an inmate of Oflag X11-B for possibly two years - 1943-45. He was captured leading a 2/28th Battalion attack on Ruin Ridge, Tobruk, on July 26/27, 1942. I believe he spent a number of months in an Italian POW camp after his capture, before being transferred to Hadamar.

Oflag X11-B was originally named Oflag X11-A. See following (from Wikipedia): Oflag XII-A was a German prisoner of war camp in World War II for officers. It was located at Hadamar, near Limburg an der Lahn in western Germany. It was created in November 1939 for Polish officers captured in the September campaign. In June 1942 it was renumbered Oflag XII-B.

• November 1939 - Polish officers and a small number of orderlies were transported to Hadamar from other collection camps in Poland.
• In June 1942 the Polish officers were transferred to other camps, such as Oflag VII-A Murnau and Oflag VI-B, Dössel. In their place British, French and other Allied officers were transferred to Hadamar from the citadel of Mainz. It was then renumbered Oflag XII-B
• In 1943, after the withdrawal of Italy from the war, the German army transferred Allied officers from camps in Italy, such as Sulmona, to Hadamar.
• The camp was liberated 26 March 1945 by the United States Army.

My father in civilian life was a biology and agricultural science teacher. In Oflag 11-B he sought, and was granted, permission to conduct classes in horticulture, including the creation of vegetable gardens. Initially his request was refused by the commandant. Dad argued that the courses would offset some of the boredom affecting the POW officers incarcerated, pointing out that boredom bred discontent, unruly behaviour, etc. This being so, it would be as much in the German interest to permit the courses, as in the prisoners' interests.
He told me that he was particularly fortunate in that the German OIC of the camp was intelligent and, he believed, realised that Germany was heading for ultimate defeat in the war. For this reason he delayed moving the camp's prisoners east, deeper into Germany, as the Allies advanced from the west, until delay was not longer tenable.
The commandant finally accepted my father's proposition, but stipulated that only half of all vegetables produced could be for POW's use; the balance was to go to the Germans.
As a consequence of his initiative, my father was given a certificate of appreciation by 43 other officers who were POWs in Oflag X11-B and who benefited from his efforts.
This hand-produced certificate is in my possession now. It reads: Lieut-Col L. McCarter, MC. The undersigned present this token in appreciation of his untiring work.
[There follows the signatures of 43 officers, including two brigadiers; two lieut-colonels; and several captains and lieutenants. Many signatories did not include their rank].
At the bottom of the certificate appears:

COURSE IN HORTICULTURE. 1944. OFLAG X11-B.
HADAMAR, GERMANY

My father returned to Australia in 1946 after spending quite a few months at Eastbourne
, England, where he was one of eight senior officers responsible for administering the Australian Forces camp there. He died in Adelaide in 1983. My mother died in 2001. I have his war medals (I'm now 72, and now live in southern Tasmania).

Hoping the above may be of some interest to you,
Yours sincerely... J.B. (Jim) McCarter."

24 July 2010

Email update from Jim McCarter

As a follow-up to information given you last year re my father, Lt. Col. Lewis Mccarter & his imprisonment in the German POW camp, Oflag X11-B, Hadamar, Germany, I made an error of fact as to where my Dad was captured.
- I stated it was at Ruin Ridge, Tobruk. I have since discovered that Ruin Ridge was, in fact, at El Alamein.
- Wld appreciate if this correction could be made to the data you published on the Net.
Many TNX

21 July 2013

Email from Alexis:

"I am doing some research on Hadamar Oflag X11 B and have just come across P J Brooke Taylor's request for information about her father Major CC Johansen. My father was in the same room as he was, 25b and in his diary writes a lot about the camp. I am writing a book about my father's experience at a POW which she might be interested in. His name was Major Alexis Casdagli and the book is called Prouder Than Ever To Be Greek."

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Burless Jean Oyler

Moonbelle (sig.) is from Alabama and has recently learned that an uncle served in WWII and saw several battles. He also received some medals but there is almost no information on him. He is from Fort Payne, Alabama and he left the army in 1945. The only other information is that he was in Germany on ground fights. If you have any information, please contact Moonbelle directly.

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Harry Nergaard

Joe is looking for information on his late grandfather, Harry Nergaard. Harry was in the Durham Light Infantry, caught by German forces in Africa (possibly) and moved to Poland/Germany and held there until the end of the war.

If anyone remembers Harry or was caught at start of the war in North Africa, please let Joe know directly.

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Vincent Patrick Nield

Vincent is looking for information on his father, 3449947 Vincent Patrick Nield, Pte, 8th Battalion Lancashire Fusiliers. He was sent to Dunkirk from Eccles Drill Hall (TA) and his friends were Stan Johnson, Bill Johnson,Chris Griffin and Eric Heap.

Vinny has a picture of the 8th Battalion Lancashire Fusiliers (TA) taken in (approx.) 1939.

If you know anything about Vincent or, indeed, any of his friends, please get in touch with Vinny directly.

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New York Daily News - Contact Required

Jerry needs a contact that knows when New York Daily News published the colour maps where GI's were held in prison camps. He called the NYDN research team and unless he has an exact date they can't find the newspaper. Jerry's uncle was in Stalag IV and survived the 600 mile march. He is
working on a short book about him.

Please contact Jerry if you can help.

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James Norton

Steve's father-in-law, Private James Norton, Army # 13382, was captured on his way to Dunkirk and had an eight week journey to Stalag XXA, Torun, Poland. Steve believes that there is a picture on David Parker's site that could be James, sitting crossed legged at the front.

If you have any information, please contact Steve directly.

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Frederick Lawrence Osborn

Lisa is looking for information on her grandfather, Frederick Lawrence Osborn.

He was a PoW in Germany from 1940-1945 and was in the Horseguards.

Unfortunately that is all she does know.

If you can help with any information, please contact Lisa

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Sean O'Mahony (or O'Mahoney)

Victoria has been trying to find her grandfather for over 15 years now to no avail. His name was Sean O'Mahony (or could be spelt O'Mahoney) and he was based in the Pioneer Corps in Scraptoft, Leicester around 1947/1948.

Victoria knows he was from Blackrock, Cork and was born around 1926.

She has contacted the Army Records some years ago and they stated that they had found a record but could not release the information and asked me for a nickname, which she does not know.

Victoria's father would desperately like to meet his own father but sadly has given up hope of ever finding him.

If you can help with any information, please contact Victoria

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Robert Edward O'Neill

Margery is researching information on Robert Edward O'Neill for his daughter. Do you know of Robert and can shed any light on him?

Margery provided the following addition information:

He was born 1st March 1919, and his address was 12 Jubilee Avenue, Bridlington.
Written on back of the photo she has is "Nov 1942. Stalag XXB, MAin Camp, District GRP. Northern C.
Monday 16th April - tanks arrived at 8.30 am."
Robert also received some medals but they are lost.

If you can help with any more information, please contact Margery

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John (Johnny) O'Hagan

Mary is looking for any information on her late grandfather, John (Johnny) O'Hagan. All she knows is he served on HMS Canton and he went to Africa. He was a carpenter by trade, and she thinks he might have been a Petty Officer.

John O Hagan is 4th from left on the back row. The photographs stamp on the back says "Knickerbocker Photographers, 82 Court Street, Brooklyn, New York".

The photograph has written on the front "Annual Communion Breakfast, Our Lady of Perpetual Help, Holy Name Society, Hotel St George Ballroom, May 11, 1941, No 5056". Also included Mary said was "HMS 107, No 5056".

If you can help with any information on John, please contact Mary

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Cyril Newall


David is looking for information on Cyril Newall of the Buffs who was captured at Dunkirk and sent to Stalag XXA (Nr 5410).

He has no more information on Cyril so can anyone please help?

If you can help with any information, please contact David

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Weymeth (Pete) O'Neill

Weymeth "Pete" O'Neill, was an Antitank Gun Crewman 610, who was badly wounded but survived the battle of the Kasserine Pass. He was a gunner and driver of a Grant tank during the campaign.

Sadly, he could not tell me much about his experience.

He was a Private in Company I, 13th Armored Infantry Regiment, while in Kentucky. Not sure if the 13th Armored would have been re-named when later attached with the 1st Armored.

He said his tank was destroyed while defending the retreat. Is it possible to find detail regarding this specific unit?

His discharge papers show him as a Cpl with Co. I 13th Arm. Inf. Reg.

Are there still living survivors of this battle who keep in touch with one another?

If you can help with any information, please email.

31st May 2010

Tracy sent the following information:

"O'Neill, Weymeth: Co I, 13th Armored Infantry Regiment attached 1st Armored Division (name does not seem to have changed; nicknamed "Old Ironsides"); 1st Armored Division has held annual reunions since 1945; need to check 1st Armored Division Association at natsec0.tripol.com/1st-armored-div/index.htm."

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Operation Harpoon

See here under Thomas Power - can you help with any information?

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Ronald Ord

Richard is trying to find out any information about a Ronald Ord, his great grandfather.

He was captured at Dunkirk and sent to Stalag XXB. He was in the Durham Light Infantry and spent his time in the camp as far as Richard knows as part of the medical staff.

Please contact Richard if you can help with information on Ronald.

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Harry Nicholls

Philip has in his possesion three photos: one is a group photo with the head of his uncle, Harry Nicholls, cut out to put in his sisters locket, and two are of a funeral. There is no ID for the deceased, but the name on the cross on the grave in front is Pte Joseph Cribben, of the Kensington Regiment.

Harry was captured at Dunkirk, held in Kgf BAB 20 and Philip does know they are his photos.

Here are the photographs Philip has sent (click to enlarge):

Harry Nicholls is 3rd from the right
The writing on the card that Harry sent to his sister
Harry Nicholls is in the middle row right hand side
Harry Nicholls head was cut out for his sister's locket
Funeral
Pte Joseph Cribben, of the Kensington Regiment

Harry was most likely in the Middlesex Regiment and came from Tottenham, London. He worked at the Whitbread Brewery before and after the War.

Please contact Philip if you can help with information on Harry or Joseph.

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Henry Osborn (Osborne?)

"Hello my grandma in Acireale, Catania, Italy, about 10 years ago told us the true about my grandpa. He was a military policeman stationed in Sicily around Aug or Sept 1943 and she said his name was Henry Osborn (now I don`t know if the spelling is right), but my mom really would love to know who her father is. Maybe he told about this girl he meet in Sicily?"

Please email if you can help with information on Henry.

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George Albert Nicholls

"I am currently researching my grandad's life (George Albert Nicholls) and during the War he was captured in Tobruk - was first taken to Italy and then went to STALAG IV DZ Germany (02/09/1944 - 24/04/1945).

Does anyone by any chance have any newpapers that cover that camp at that time?"

Please email Tony if you can help with information.

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John Nickel

"My uncle, John Nickel, joined the army in Calgary, Alberta, Canada in Sept 1942 and went into the RCASC - truck driver for 3rd Cdn Infantry Brigade - and served in Italy in 1944 and up to Holland where he met some locals. He died after he came back but shortly after the war in 1951 and we never really got to know him. I was very young when he died but always heard from others about his years in the war. He also lived in BC when I grew up in MB so really never saw him. I was wondering if anyone would have photos or knew him either in Holland or in Rome he was in the hospital with a minor injury. I know he served with different groups in the Army as he was a driver so wherever needed he went there. If you need further info please let me know = I am his niece, he never had any family, never married though he had pictures of girls he met in Holland. Would love to get info from anyone. "

Please email Betty if you can help with information.

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James Frederick Osborn

John emailed to say:

"I am researching 2 members of my extended family who were POW's in WWII. Both held at some time in Germany. Both are now dead, so I cannot refer my enquiries to them personally.

My uncle, James Frederick Osborn was a Gunner in the Royal Artillery and was captured in North Africa. He was initially detained in Campo 59 at Servigliano, Italy. From 1943 he appears to have held at Stalag VIb, Muhlberg.

My cousins husbands father Richard "Dick" Felstead, was captured at Dunkirk in 1940. We know nothing about where he was when captured or where he was intered. We believe he was in the Middlesex Regiment.

Any help or advice will be gratefully recieved."

Please email John if you can help with information.

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Nelson Robert Owen

Steve is looking for information on his father:

"My father Nelson Robert Owen was born In Heacham, Norfolk on the 4th of November 1918. He served with the 7th Royal Norfolk Regiment. during the Second World War. He was captured at St.Valery on the 12/06/1940. His prisoner of war number was 15877. He was held in Stalag XXA in Poland.

click to enlarge

Due to my father dying in 1971 at the age of 52 (I was only 13 years old) I didn''t ever really get to hear anything much about his time as a prisoner of war. But one thing I do remember is him telling me about his friend (who later became a close family friend) John Hagen, who since the War lived near Melton Constable, Norfolk. He had one Christmas Eve when it was bitterly cold and snowing, picked up his banjo and played 'Silent Night'. Afterwards everyone was completely quiet and silence remained for quite some time, as obviously everyone was feeling very homesick and thinking of family back home. John Hagen had also told me how he had worked in the kitchen and also in the brewery at the camp, where they would prepare the food for the Germans, and would reguarly urinate in the soup, etc!"

Please email Betty if you can help with information.

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Herbert Nurse

Jonathan contacted me through Facebook to say:

"I am looking for some information from anybody that spent time or had a relative that spent time in Stalag XXB. My late grandfather was a POW there after being captured in St Valery France. My grandfather was Herbert Nurse and he was a member of the Royal Norfolk Regiment. If anyone has a photograph of my grandfather at that time I would love to see it."

Please contact me if you can help with information.

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James Henry Owen

Gillian contacted me to say:

"I'm looking for any information regarding my father James Henry Owen from Bolton, who was taken prisoner and was in Stalag VIII (8) hut 4B No. 261901 Gnr, 1778334."

Please contact Gillian if you can help with information.

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Please send all replies to enquiries to me using the Contact page

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