Southern Appalachian Digital Collections

Western Carolina University (21) View all
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Summary of prisoner-of-war experiences of Robert Venoy Reed

Item
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Item’s are ‘child’ level descriptions to ‘parent’ objects, (e.g. one page of a whole book).

  • Summary of Prisoner-of-War Experiences of Robert Venoy Reed I was inducted into the service on October 1942 and went through the usual training, including surgical school technician training* before being shipped overseas. I landed on Omaha Beach, France, on D-Day Plus 10, June 16, 1944. On 26 June 1944 I was recommended for the Silver Star. A part of the recommendation: ”Without hesitation T/4 Reed crawled into an area which was under an intense concentration of enemy artillery and machine gun fire in order to evacuate two wounded men who were lying in an exposed position. —- Four times he was forced to take cover from intense enemy fire.” This as a typical day in the life of a Medic and I only did what the other medics did in carrying out their duty. From the time I landed At Omaha Beach until my capture I was on active duty for 7 months; the only relief was a few days when we pulled back for regrouping and replacements. That is a long time in combat with no rest relief. I worked as a Medic until shortly before my capture on Jan. 19. At Christmas I was a Medic with our outfit in Belgium, but went to battalion aid station shortly after that. I was captured with other battalion aide station personnel in Alsace. I was working at the time. We could see Germans across the Rhine River. Our troops had been moved to help relieve the situation at the Battle of the Bulge, and only a remnant of the 79th Division was left. We had no back up force to save us from the Germans when they over ran our position. There was snow on the ground and I was working in my OD shirtsleeves when captured. I can’t remember how I got a coat, but somebody gave me a fatigue jacket down on the river. At Baden-Baden, in the first prison camp, I was assigned to a German doctor. We walked through a large part of Germany because the Germens were retreating from allied troops. We got very little food and water. We slept in dirty barns and often had to stand up because there was no room to lie down. The Germans constantly cursed us and called us ”dirty dogs” and said, ”Why don’t you clean up? Why don’t you shave” and we didn’t have anything to shave with. I can remember getting one Red Cross parcel which I shared with the German doctor.
Object
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Object’s are ‘parent’ level descriptions to ‘children’ items, (e.g. a book with pages).