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April 29, 1945

April 29, 1945Heidenheim, GermanyNo. 32 (conclusion) Dear Folksies,                    Finally, after getting another load of stuff (the things that we had brought down in the first echelon), the trucks made another trip down here. By that time, in fact the evening before, most of the outside vehicles had arrived so that all headed down […]

April 28, 1945

April 28, 1945Heidenheim, GermanyNo. 32 (continued) Dear Folksies,                  When we got into the town I found that it was darned near impossible to get over to where the main section was — the town was a wreck, and, in fact, was still smoking.  Parked the vehicles in a small field by a grainary […]

April 27, 1945

April 27, 1945Heidenheim, GermanyNo. 32 Dear Folksies,                  Almost a week since last writing and not a chance during all that time to sit down and get even a line off to you.  And strangely enough, only yesterday kept me busy in surgery.  Have, on the other days, been tearing around the […]

April 26, 1945

On April 26, 1945, we hear more from Dr. Philip Westdahl about the unit’s move to Heidenheim… Most of the small villages along the route were flying white flags from a window of every house, as well as the church and city hall, and there was very little evidence of destruction. Here and there, however, […]

April 25, 1945

Today we have an excerpt from the journal of Philip Westdahl, about the 59th Evac. Unit’s journey to Heidenheim around April 25, 1945. Toward the latter part of April, it became evident that the Seventh Army was turning south into the German province of Bavaria, having gone as far east as Nuremberg and captured that […]

April 21, 1945

April 21, 1945Tiefenthal, GermanyNo. 31 (conclusion) Dear Folksies,                     Finally we came down off the hill and went to the “Surgical Clinic” where we were shown around sort of on a tour of inspection, by a Professor Bauer the Head of the Clinic.  It is obviously a relatively new place and has more equipment […]

April 20, 1945

April 20, 1945Tiefenthal, GermanyNo. 31 (continued) Dear Folksies,                 Heidelberg was, as far as damage was concerned, just about the direct opposite of Mannheim.  The only damage done there had been done by the Krauts themselves, and that consisted merely of blowing up of the bridges which spanned the Neckar.  As papers have depicted […]

April 19, 1945

April 19, 1945Tiefenthal, GermanyNo. 31 Dear Folksies,                 The evening of the day that Mattie and Phil returned, Wally got up enough nerve to ask the Col. if, since the “Gang-Greene” was off duty the next day, it would be possible to visit Heidelberg.  To Wally’s surprise the Old Man agreed that it would […]

April 18, 1945

April 18, 1945Tiefenthal, GermanyNo. 30 Dear Folksies,                As the old saying goes, “If it hasn’t happened to the 59th, then it just couldn’t have happened.”  Well, here’s one for the publicity fiends, for Hollywood, or just for Dr. Kildare Westdahl and Dr. Gillespie Mathewson. As Phil said, for him it could be entitled, […]

April 17, 1945

Here, on April 17, 1945, is Part Two of the entry from the journal of Dr. Philip Westdahl about his “good fortune to take part in one of those rare experiences of drama in every-day life.” We could find no criticism of the care the lad had received in the hands of the Germans. They […]

April 16, 1945

Here – on April 16, 1945, is Part One of an entry from the journal of Dr. Philip Westdahl about his “good fortune to take part in one of those rare experiences of drama in every-day life.” Part Two will be published on April 17. We were enjoying the sunset one evening when two small […]

April 15, 1945

April 15, 1945Tiefenthal, GermanyNo. 29 (conclusion) Dear Folksies,               On Thursday, tho’ on second call we were called to work about 10 P.M. and by the time we were finished we stayed around a bit longer to see what Chuck and Bret (with Frank assisting as the only bones involved for Bret were a […]

April 13, 1945

April 13, 1945Tiefenthal, GermanyNo. 29 Dear Folksies,                     After the announcement that startled us all tremendously at midnight last night, I am rather anxiously awaiting comments that I hope you will be having the time and energy to make.  I will be interested in what you think may be the outcome of the passing […]

April 11, 1945

April 11, 1945Tiefenthal, GermanyNo. 28 Dear Folksies,                Am on 2nd call tonight and it looks as if Bret and Chuck are going to be able to handle things, so shall probably stay over here in Surgery a little while and write a couple of letters. The last two nites the ”Gang-Greene” was on […]

April 10, 1945

On April 10, 1945 we have an entry from the journal of Dr. Philip Westdahl… As our activity died down, the other Evac. hospitals leap-frogged us and followed the front across the Rhine, leaving us to take care of the Divisions temporarily assigned to occupying and policing the Saar. Daily we witnessed the steady stream […]

April 9, 1945

René mentioned in his most recent letter that Dr. Phil Westdahl had captured a German soldier in Tiefenthal. On April 9, 1945, here is Phil’s account… I had the unique experience one morning of capturing a German soldier. I had often heard tales from our patients of how German soldiers wandered about looking for someone […]

April 8, 1945

April 8, 1945Tiefenthal, GermanyNo. 27 Dear Folksies,                     The last few days, instead of getting warmer daily, seemed to get colder, particularly in the early morns. The wind, too, has hardly let up at any time.             Westdahl is now about in the same class as Stratte [in France]. He crossed the road today […]

April 5, 1945

April 5, 1945Tiefenthal, GermanyNo. 26 Dear Folksies,                     Weather has been miserable around here the last few days and one never knows if it is going to rain one minute to the next. Luckily this ground absorbs the water well so that we haven’t particularly been bothered by mud, anyway the rain hasn’t been […]

April 4, 1945

April 4, 1945Tiefenthal, GermanyNo. 25 (conclusion) Dear Folksies,                     An interesting P.O.W. patient the other night, who surprised us all by starting to talk in excellent English with all the high-school language trimmings.  It turned out that his story was that he had lived for 15 years in Springfield, Mass. (He’s only about 20 […]

April 3, 1945

April 3, 1945Tiefenthal, GermanyNo. 25 (continued) Dear Folksies,                 Strangest coincidence to occur as far as anyone in the outfit is concerned, is, I think, the one that happened to my friend Davidson about two weeks ago.  He’s the one, you will remember my telling you about, who used to be General Patch’s driver […]

April 2, 1945

April 2, 1945Tiefenthal, GermanyNo. 25 Dear Folksies,                     The day after my last letter, things slackened off for us and we knew that some of our friends must have played leap-frog with us, as we had done with them just a few days before. As x-ray was quiet as a mouse, I developed 6 […]

April 1, 1945

No letter from René on April 1, 1945. Here’s an excerpt from the journal of Dr. Philip Westdahl about the conclusion of their 75-mile journey to Tiefenthal, Germany. As we drove through the Saar toward the Rhine, we could feel the hostility in the air. The German men, women and children on the streets paused […]