PFC James Glen Farmer

 

Unit : Company C, 136th Regiment, 35th Division.

Served : North-West Europe (captured).

 

Taken Prisoner November 23, 1944 Thanksgiving Day. In Hospital Nov 24th - Dec 13, 1944. Arrive Stalag IIIB Dec 13th left Dec 15th 1944, Sent to K.D.O. {Arbeitskommando} #3 Dec. 15th, 1944.

 

Date Received first Red Cross parcel - Dec. 16th, 1944. Wrote my first letter home on December 15th. Always the first letter to my wife. The Hospital patients consisted of Russians, & Yugoslavians. The doctors were Russians and were very good to us. The both spoke a little English. There were five other soldiers with me, two of which stayed there when we left.

 

Received Christmas parcel from the Red Cross at the K.D.O we had a tree in the room. It as decorated also the room (Thank's to the Red Cross for a fairly good Christmas this past year.) Received first package of the New year on Jan 13, 1945.  Moved from K.D.O.#3 on Feb 17th 1945. It was a Railroad K.D.O not too hard work. A flat car ran over my left foot and injured it till I didn't go out on commando for a few days.

 

Walked for three days. Slept in barn's at nights. Had boiled potatoes to eat on the march. Arrive at Stalag IIIA the 20th of Feb. 1945. The food rationing was rather small but thanks to the Red Cross again. Received red cross parcel on the 6th of  March 1945 for four men to one box.

 

Wrote my first letter from IIIA on the 21st of Feb 1945. Received one parcel per man on the 8th of March.

 

In April we heard a rumor that the Germans were going to move IIIA to keep the allies from capturing it. The Red Army came in too fast for them and on the 21st of April the first Russian armored car came to camp. The German guard ran off and left the camp and all P.O.W.s  On the 22nd a spearhead of the Russian Army came through the camp about noon. That was one of the most wonderful day's in my whole life. Then began our wait to be taken out. It was hard waiting. We were there a week and then the Russian General wanted to make us comfortable so he had us moved to a camp called Hitler lager (April 29th. Stayed there 3 days and while there the American and Russian lines met. Then we began to hear that the Americans would come after us. Then on Friday a few Americans came to camp and said a convoy of trucks would be in at 9:00 o'clock the next morning. We were already planning to leave for the American lines if now news came down that night. We were leaving early the next morning. We didn't leave the next morning but waited till about 2 o'clock that afternoon before leaving. As we left a convoy of ambulances came in to take out the sick. We walked awhile about 21 or 22 kilometers and the a command car came by with a colonel in it. He picked us up and carried us to the P.W. Central a place where they sent us on back. We were there two nights and then left. Came to an air base still in Germany, but in American hands. The two boys I started with - we are still together one in from Ok and the other from Colorado.

 

I rode in my first today. It was a lot of und to look out on Germany from the air. We are in France now waiting for showers and new clothes to go to the ship to sail home. I have to go to another town here in France - Reims, not a big town for the states but maybe a fairly larger one for France. I have the new clothes and went to another camp in Reims. Then that after noon we were flown to Lib. Then we went to a camp which is named Lucky Strike. I'm in the boat for sure now. It's rather hard to wait now that I'm so near leaving yet not leaving.

 

PFC James G. Farmer

 

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