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Gentlemen,

I thought this group belonging to my grandfather might be of interest. His name was Eberhard Erich Richard Ochs, born March 12, 1895 in Berlin-Friedenau as the second son of Imperial Architect Paul Ochs and his wife Helene geb. Simeon. He volunteered for service with the 5th Foot Guards Regiment in Spandau, along with his two brothers, in the first week of the war.

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Here are the three brothers, Eberhard, Albrecht and Wolfgang, photographed outside their home on Paulsenn Strasse, first week of August, 1914. All three served in the same regiment, the 203rd reserve, all three were wounded and won the Iron Cross, and all survived the war.

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Captured by the Russians when the garrison of Koenigsberg surrendered on April 9, 1945, Eberhard was sent to a death camp in the hinterland of East Prussia. While there he managed to hang onto a couple of family photos, including this one.

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After being held in the camp until September, being starved and left for dead, a sympathetic Russian doctor filed the paperwork which led to his freedom and his eventual return to Germany. According to my father, not even his own family could recognize him when he returned, as he weighed only 90 lbs. and his head was shaved. Here is the Russian release form. If anyone can translate this, it would be most appreciated. Eberhard Ochs died in Vancouver, Canada in December of 1982, having emigrated in 1953. Thanks for your attention.

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Thanks Doc. I spent alot of time with my "Opi" when I was a pre-schooler, and he always was a larger-than-life figure to me. I remember I used to bug him to show me his decorations. The only thing that ever scared him was the Russians, the main reason for him emigrating. Here is his last will and testament, filed in February 1945, when the siege of Koenigsberg was at its height. I am translating into english his 66 page account of his capture and experiences in the death camp.

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Outstanding family grouping and a great history.

It is a great group but as individual pieces, I have to say

that the cutout WBs really caught my eye.

Thanks for sharing you grandfather with us.

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Jacky,

When Koenigsberg fell the Captured German Soldiers Garrisoned there were sent to these "death Camps".

He was lucky to have survived the camps and to have had a Doctor that lived up to the standard..."Do No Harm"!!

:beer: Doc

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  • 1 year later...

The Russian Form merely gives his name in Russian (mangled) and year of birth and releases him from an unspecified camp for former military detainees to return to his home address, 9.9.45. It is filled in with the Soviet Field Post number for "Unit 61948" but there is no visible signature or rank of the commander.

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Hi Koberstein,

Yes, your dad Mike is my cousin. Please feel free to call me if you have any questions regarding family history. I am now almost finished the rough draft of the translation regarding his time in the death camps. He was sent to three camps in total, including the notorious Camp 7533 located near Preussisch Eylau. Apparently the German War Graves Commission is working to get permission from the Russian government to look after the mass graves located there.

Edited by Rick Research
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I have removed your publicly posted phone number, since there are google spider harvet thingies swarming everywhere on the internet HOPING for such things.

You can send information like that by PM without getting 3 AM phone calls from Nigerian internet scammers. :rolleyes:

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That's interesting. I'd kinda like to hear about the death camps, as awful as they were...I believe my Opi, Inge(Omi)'s husband was also in a Russian death camp...do you know anything about that? When I did my project, we called Omi but she couldn't find much on the Koberstein side of the family, just a bit on Ochs.

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Hello Koberstein,

Regarding Ludwig Koberstein, he was in the Luftwaffe, I believe as a radio operator on bombers, and he was a member of the crew of Knight's Cross winner Oblt. Thoss. I have several copies of photos of him during his time in the service, which he autographed for me. Unfortunately details are sketchy, and I don't know if he was captured by the Russians. Of course, you could have been captured by the western allies and still find yourself in a death camp. Read Bacque's "Other Losses" for a sobering account of the conditions in the camps on the Rhine.

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