Home   |   Research   |   Calendar of Events   |   Historical Records   |   Newsletter   |   About KVGS  

German POWs - The Forgotten Twenty-Six

From 1943 to 1946, Fort Custer housed several German Prosoner of War Camps.  Many of the 4,000 prisoners worked on farms and in vinyards in the area.

In Section B of Fort Custer National Cemetery, once part of Post Cemetery of Fort Custer, there are 26 German graves.

Sixteen of the men were killed or died as a result of an accident on October 31, 1945 when a truck, returning German prisonerss od War from a work detail to their POW Camp at Fort Custer, collided with a train at an unguarded railroad crossing at Blissfield, Michigan.

In 1953, upon request by Congressman Paul Schaeffer, American Legion Post #54 included the 26 German POW graves in their annual memorial service to honor those who died in defense of their country.

At the time, German Chancellor Konrad Adenauer's office became involved through the German Consulate in detroit, to provide German flags and representatives from the German government to attend the memorial services.

Eventually, the United War Veterans Council, and other organizations in the area, became sponsors of the annual memorial service, which is now held on the third Sunday in November, on Germany's "Volkstrauertag" or "Day of National Mourning."

The German Government has awarded decorations to officers of the various veterans' organizations for remembering their former adversaries in form of the annual memorial service; as has the State of Michigan by issuing proclomations to honor the Unites War Veterans Council for furthering German/American relations.

Names of German POWs Interred at Fort Custer National Cemetery

 

German POW Date of Birth Date of Death
Karl Acker 01 JAN 1920 03 NOV 1945 Gravestone
Richard Ackerman 12 JUL 1910 31 OCT 1945 Gravestone
Ernest Ahrens 08 APR 1924 31 OCT 1945 Gravestone
Arthur Aissen (Unknown) 29 SEP 1944 Gravestone
Phillip Allmann (Unknown) 31 OCT 1945 Gravestone
Frantz Allmer 16 NOV 1914 31 OCT 1945 Gravestone
Rolf Arnold 04 DEC 1924 31 OCT 1945 Gravestone
Karl Arzberger 12 Dec 1913 31 OCT 1945 Gravestone
Ferdinand Auer (Unknown) 31 OCT 1945 Gravestone
August Baumgartner 29 JAN 1911 31 OCT 1945 Gravestone
Hans Becker 12 DEC 1907 31 OCT 1945 Gravestone
Anton Beckman 29 DEC 1908 01 NOV 1945 Gravestone
Kurt Behring 11 AUG 1914 31 OCT 1945 Gravestone
Paul Beiersdoerfer 28 SEP 1924 31 OCT 1945 Gravestone
Norbert Berghofer 04 JUN 1919 31 OCT 1945 Gravestone
Kurt Bernock 26 SEP 1919 31 OCT 1945 Gravestone
Heinz Bialetzke 16 FEB 1922 31 OCT 1945 Gravestone
Josef Ensgraber (Unknown) 20 JUN 1946 Gravestone
Frank Janoszek (Unknown) 01 OCT 1944 Gravestone
Kurtz Ludwig 07 FEB 1894 08 JUN 1945 Gravestone
Wilhelm Marschollek (Unknown) 10 MAY 1945 Gravestone
Johann Patsch (Unknown) 16 OCT 1944 Gravestone
Hans Rinde (Unknown) 22 DEC 1944 Gravestone
Johann Scheck (Unknown) 22 JUN 1944 Gravestone
Rudolf Vogler 10 DEC 1905 24 NOV 1945 Gravestone
Alois Wadle 06 NOV 1897 15 SEP 1945 Gravestone

26 Records

Source


Fort Custer National Cemetery, Kalamazoo, Michigan.

  © 2010-15  Kalamazoo Valley Genealogical Society
PO Box 405, Comstock MI  49041-0405
 
    Contact Us   |   Copyright   |   Site Map Site Designed by
Tom Wrench