Hammelburg Training Area

Sunday, 23 March 2003, 10:00 h.

We left the Infanterieschule and followed the 0,9t WOLF of Hauptmann Bschor, who guided us from the "French Cross" via Hundsfeld to Bonnland. The Task Force could never enter Hundsfeld, because the Germans had a roadblock between Hundsfeld and Bonnland. So today, it was Abe Baum's first visit in this 1940 type village, which is used today as a training village for urban combat.

(Photo: Philipp Domes)

Hauptmann Bschor was proud to show "his" training village to the veterans. The German Army spent a lot of money to preserve Bonnland in this style. After this visit we drove back to the Camp's west gate. From here we followed the route which was used by the bulk of Abe Baum's force. We passed Hill 427 and drove directly to Höllrich. On 27 March 1945 Abe Baum tried to escape with his column through Höllrich and Hessdorf - unfortunately he failed this night.

(Photo: Hauptfeldwebel Heiko Haas)

Our last stop for this tour was Hill 427 - the Reussenberg Farm. I briefed the veterans about the last fight, who the Germans get their final attack organized and coordinated. I mentioned the observer at the top of the Reussenberg castle, who reported every move of Task Force Baum. Then I asked Abe Baum to tell us with his own word what happened at this place. With a clear military description, Abe Baum described the situation and the end of his Task Force - everybody became quiet and meditative.

(Photo: Hauptfeldwebel Heiko Haas)

We assembled for a last group photo near the observer building at Hill 427. It was 14:30 h and the veterans had no lunch yet. We drove back to the main gate of the Infanterieschule. Georg Schlereth had a gift for every participant. It was a bottle of Franconian wine from Hammelburg. We shacked hands with the veterans and changed addresses. As the travel bus departed, we waved good bye.

2002 © Copyright Peter Domes -  Date of last change: 2005-06-23