I was always amazed about the stories my grandfather told me and my family about WWII.
His name was Friedrich “Fritz” Teucher, he was born on the 18th November 1921 in Rünthe, which is in West Germany.
My grandfather was in school until he was 13, then his father wanted him to work in a coal mine, like he did. But he was too small and not strong enough, so his fathers sent him to a friends farm to work there for a year, then at 14 years, he started working in the coal mine where his father worked.
In the early part of the year 1939 he was convinced he needed to go to military service, even though he wasn’t even 18. He completed his basic training and then his radioman-training (Funker), after that he completed his training for glider pilot, which started on 7th July 1939 and ended 25th March 1940. The glider training took that long, because he took part in several operations like the Invasion of Poland, Norway, Belgium, Netherlands and France.
He also took part in some air raids against England he was also stationed in France, Italy, Norway, North Africa, a short time in Russia and at the Balcan.
He was most fond of France and Italy, followed by the Balcan, but he hated Africa and Russia (where he served a short time), in Africa it was too hot, too dirty and they didn’t get enough food and to drink and Russia it was too cold.
He was mostly in aircrafts as radioman, but was later stationed on the ground mainly in France.
On the 2nd November 1944 he was in a forward post, when he and his comrads were surprised by American units that evening, however there was no shooting, because they were so surprised they just surrendered. Later he always said, that the Yankees disturbed them, when they were eating and listening to BBC-radio which was forbidden, but nobody cared about it. A few American soldiers wanted to shoot my grandfather and his buddys, but an American Leutenant didn’t allow this to happen, ordering his men to take the now POW’s to a camp and hand them over to the British Army.
So he found himself at British POW Camp in France and then on 8th March 1945 he was sent to a camp in England, moving from camp to camp several times.His parents finally heard from him on 21st September 1945, but was released until the 18th Novembre 1946 on his 25th birthday. Finally arriving home on 2nd of January 1947. Where then married my grandmother Therese Schreckenberg, whose brother was killed in war, like almost all the other brothers and sisters of her and my grandfather.