You're Grandpa was in the what? - Page 4
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  1. #46
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    Re: You're Grandpa was in the what?

    Quote Originally Posted by cms81586
    Quote Originally Posted by yagermeister
    Just because his name was changed doesn't mean he's a war criminal , many immigrant names were changed on entry through error, choice and I think the same spell of name probably drove the imm officials crazy after a while

    +1...coming from former Czechoslovakia my family dropped a "j" off of the end of our name to "Americanize" it.
    A lot of families did the same ... plus some got changed because the person at ellis island couldn't understand what was being said, so they changed it as they deemed fit.
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  2. #47
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    Re: You're Grandpa was in the what?

    Nearly 50 posts and nobody has posted a picture of the SS runes or gone off the deep end praising the uniforms,deeds or tactics or attempted to defended Nazism.This is typical of the high road we try and take here on the AK Forum.

    Good job out there you guys, now on with the interesting personal stories.
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  3. #48
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    Re: You're Grandpa was in the what?

    Quote Originally Posted by mojo100
    A lot of families did the same ... plus some got changed because the person at ellis island couldn't understand what was being said, so they changed it as they deemed fit.
    thats how my family name went from Bormann to Borman.....guess whoever signed grandpa in figured he didnt need the second "n"....never met my grandpa,he died when my dad was 17....barley spoke a few words of english,rest was german.....fought for our country in ww2 and received a purple heart for some serious shrapnel to the ankle.....i have a pic of him getting the medal in his hospital bed....the actual medal is mia.....when i have some time and resourses,i'd like to research that side of the family....from what i'm told Martin Bormann is from grandpa's side of the family.....
    "One click down for automatic.Two clicks down for semi.Mikhail Kalashnikov was not a man to mess around." The Punisher

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  5. #49
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    Re: You're Grandpa was in the what?

    this site had some pretty cool stuff.

    http://www.gentracer.org/powdeathindex.html

  6. #50
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    Re: You're Grandpa was in the what?

    well the uniforms were cool , i wanted a german helmet so bad as a kid and i did have a toy mp40 .but then i got into star wars and cut it into two laser blasters front and rear
    WTB laminate stocked russian sks and m38
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  7. #51
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    Re: You're Grandpa was in the what?

    Notoriety and infamy are a lot more interesting than merely being known. I don't think people give too much thought to meeting someone or hearing a story about a Wehrmacht, Kriegsmarine, or Luftwaffe veteran (as we have seen in the thread), but the moment someone mentions the SS, eyes pop and heads turn. I think this has a lot to do with what is making the OP so curious.

    The SS were supposed to not only be the elite of Hitler's army, but a great deal of the atrocities were committed under the umbrella of that designator. As Hootbro mentioned earlier, the strict qualifications for being in the SS was toned down dramatically and there were SS units comprised of Slavs, Indians, etc. IIRC, I read that initially, all SS men had to be Nazi party members and meet strict physical requirements. Later on in the war, as more men were needed, and I'm sure to meet propaganda requirements, SS units were formed from many members of many nations. I read that many atrocities were in fact done by these non German SS units, particularly the Russian ones. I read that the "original" SS men shunned these "affirmative action" SS men so to speak, and never regarded them as having the elite status they held. The one exception may be the Italian SS units who fought hard and bravely against the Allies, even after Italy switched sides, they were still hardcore Axis and were alongside their German counterparts the whole way.

    I'm no III Reich expert, but if I remember my readings, most of the police and paramilitary units (ie. Gestapo) also fell under the SS, and as someone mentioned these were the parties responsible for the actual rounding up, transporting, and subsequent extermination and guarding of the Jews and other condemned persons at the camps.
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  8. #52
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    Re: You're Grandpa was in the what?

    Quote Originally Posted by shopsmart
    Quote Originally Posted by hyperbole
    Guys, don't freak out, thousands of former German servicemen of all branches emigrated to the US and Canada after the war, even to the UK.
    Yeah, Camp Perry in OH was a POW camp and ALOT of them stayed in america after the war. Never met any thought.
    Fort McCoy in Wisconsin was also a German POW camp. I'd heard many stayed in the area after the war.
    YAT YAS!

  9. #53
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    Re: You're Grandpa was in the what?

    Ft. Rucker, Alabama was also a German pow camp during WWII. Alot of Germans stayed after the War.
    Impact with high order detonation, have a nice day!

  10. #54
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    Re: You're Grandpa was in the what?

    A friend's father had a farm we used for a shooting range. Had a natural backstop with a stream running in front of it. Lots of plinking fun. His father was in the SS Panzer. Spent 7 years in a Russian prison camp after the war. then came here. He really liked my AR15 rifle. Said "If we had this rifle, we could have won the war!"

    Also had a gun club member who was a truck driver on the other side. During the gas shortage in the 70ties he said he was thinking about converting his truck to wood fired gas like the one he drove in WWII. According to him, it is not that difficult to do.

  11. #55
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    Re: You're Grandpa was in the what?

    Quote Originally Posted by CGSteve
    The SS were supposed to not only be the elite of Hitler's army,
    ....
    I read I remember my readings, most of the police and paramilitary units (ie. Gestapo) also fell under the SS,
    The SS were originally Hitler's personal bodyguard. Their duties were extended to become Party police, essentially. Himmler rolled up all the police, the border guards, and the Gestapo into the RHSA in a power grab. He also persuaded Hitler that the Party ought to have its own army units. None of the National Socialists really trusted the regular army, which was full of "vons" and professionals who weren't directly committed to the National Socialist platform. When Hitler had the Big Picture in mind he didn't care for the wusses on the General Staff making objections, so the idea of military units that would obey without question was an easy sell.

    The professionals knew what they were doing, though, and Himmler had a hard time understanding that just telling someone he was now a combat general didn't actually *make* him a combat general. There were some professionals recruited into the SS anyway, but due to their leadership problems and differences in chain of command and logistics, the SS often wound up used as shock troops when placed with conventional soldiers, or simply used independently. The SS also wound up implementing Party policies that the Heer might refuse to carry out.

    [note: some interpretation has been done in the interest of brevity; the history of the SS is more a part of the history of the NSDAP than of the German military]

 

 
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