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    This is just idle curiosity. I was looking through some old Military History magazines a friend gave to me and there was an article about The Great Escape from Stalag Luft III. This is the one that the movie, The Great Escape, with Steve McQueen, was based on.

    The article had a photo of the prison camp commander, Luftwaffe Oberst Friedrich Wilhelm von Lindeiner-Wildau. Guessing that he probably served in WW1, I went and looked in the 1914 rank list and found four entries.

    In all of these the name was listed as von Lindeiner gen. v. Wildau (not sure what the gen. v. stands for).

    Two ranked as Major z. D. at Landwehrbesirks, so they're probably too old.

    One was a Hauptmann in the 1. Garde-Regiment zu Fu?.

    One was a Leutnant der Reserve in Feld-Artillerie-Regiment von Puecker (1. Schlesisches) Nr.6.

    Anyone know which one, if any, is the future Stalag Luft III commander?

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    Guest Rick Research

    Friedrich Wilhelm von Lindeiner genannt von Wildau of 1st Guard Regiment of Foot was born in 1880. He was not a flyer (movies never get things right!), but a STAFF officer, retiring after WW1 as a Major and Adjutant of the Guard Reserve Corps.

    He turns up on WW1 award rolls for the

    Saxe Ernestine House Order-Knight 1st Class with Swords 1 May 1918 as Hauptmann and 1st Adjutant of the Government of Riga and the Mouth of the D?na, and

    Principality of Hohenzollern Honor Cross 3b with Swords 5 February 1915 while still in 1. GRzF

    He received a Prussian Crown Order 4th Class with Swords for the brutal fighting in the German East Africa campaign of 1905-07 (Colonial Medal with that bar).

    Yes, Hollywood, I am available for location shoots. :catjava:

    He was saved from execution by the SS/G?ring/Hitler by a super speedy Luftwaffe courtmartial arranged by friends, which reduced him to the rank of private and sent him to the front in a penal battalion at age 64! After the war he was brought to Britain for testimony regarding the escape and its aftermath, but I do not know where or when he died.

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    I don't know how reliable this is, but I saw on a web site devoted to Stalag Luft III that von Lindeiner died in 1963, aged 82. His memoirs are in the possession of the US Air Force Academy.

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    During their stay in exile, the German Crownprince and his aide, M?ldner von M?lnheim, were visited by:

    Lindeiner genannt von Wildau, Friedrich Wilhelm Franz Max Erdmann Gustav von, b. Glatz 12.12.1880, kgl. preu?. Major und pers?nlicher Adjutant SKH Joachim Prinz von Preu?en d. Frankfurth a.M. 22.5.1963 , m. Den Haag 25.3.1909 Henriette Baronesse van der Goes van Dirxland, b. Utrecht 23.12.1878, d. Oberh?chstadt, Taunus 30.12.1973 d.o. Henri Baron v.d.G. v. D. and Jkvr. Cornelia Junius van Hemert.

    Don't know how helpfull this is to you, but at least it confirms the deathin 63.



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    Friedrich-Wilhelm Franz Max Erdmann Gustav v. Lindeiner gen. v. Wildau was born at Glatz on 12 December 1880. He entered the 3. Garde-Regiment zu Fu? as a Seconde-Lieutenant on graduation from the Corps of Cadets on 15 March 1898. On the 1st of May 1902 he left the Prussian Army and the following day entered the Schutztruppe for German East Africa. He served as the Adjutant of the Governor of German East Africa from 20 June to 13 September 1905 and as the Headquarters Adjutant of the Schutztruppe for German East Africa from 7 September to 11 October 1906. He left Schutztruppe service on on 31 July 1908 and re-entered the Prussian Army on 1 August 1908 with a simultaneous promotion to Oberleutnant and was assigned to the 4. Garde-Regiment zu Fu? (Patent of 19.5.07). On 20 July 1912 on promotion to Hauptmann he was assigned as the commander of 11./1. Garde-Regiment zu Fu?. On 10 August 1914 he was assigned as the Commander of the Infanterie-Stabswache at the General Headquarters of the Kaiser in the Field. On 19 September he returned to his regiment as commander of 11./1. Garde-Regiment zu Fu? where he was wounded at Ypres on 17 November 1914. Returning to duty on 13 April he assumed command of 5./1. Garde-Regiment zu Fu? and then II./1. Garde-Regiment zu Fu? on 27 May 1915. He was again wounded during the pursuit between the River Bug and Jasiolda on 29 August 1915. Once again returning to duty he took over F./1. Garde-Regiment zu Fu? and was yet again severely wounded on 5 December 1915 in positional fighting around Roye-Noyon (Fresnieres).

    On 24 September 1914 he was assigned to Etappen-Inspektion 5 (Lines of Communication Inspectorate) and on 4 October 1916 assigned as the personal Adjutant of Prince Joachim of Prussia. Following his return to his Regiment on 30 October 1917 he became the Adjutant to the Governor of Riga-D?nam?nde. Appointed as Adjutant to the Garde-Reserve-Korps on 23 April 1918 he was promoted to Major on 15 July 1918. His final wartime appointment was as Adjutant of the 4th Army which he assumed on 8 November 1918.

    Following the Armistice he was leader of the collecting point in Potsdam of the Volunteer Border Protection Unit East and Upper East from 18 January 1919. He retired on 20 September 1919 with permission to wear the uniform of the 1. Garde-Regiment zu Fu?.



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    Thank you again for all the information. I just love having lots of useless details that I will probably never, ever need for anything other than to just have the knowledge! :cheers:

    I've just read through your narrative of von Lindeiner's career and there's a couple of things I wanted to check with you.

    After you mention him being wounded on 29 August 1915 you stated he returned to duty and took over F./1. Garde-Regiment zu Fu?. I'm a bit new at some of this, so I'm guessing the 11./1. you mentioned earlier means 11th company, and II/1. means 2nd Battalion, but what does F./1. mean? Fusileer company????

    Right after that you mention he was wounded again on 5 December 1915. Then you say on 24 September 1914 he was assigned to Etappen-Inspektion 5. Did you mean 24 September 1916?

    Again, thank you so much for the details.

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    • 4 weeks later...

    In 1960 I attended von Lindeiner's 80th birthday party at the Frankfurter Hof (Frankfurt's main hotel in those days).He took me to one side and showed me letters (the originals, I think) from Col Scotland, who had been in charge of the post-war interrogation centre in Hyde Park, London.

    The letters were to the effect that v L was an officer abd a gentleman, and had never been a Nazi.

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    • 8 months later...
    Guest Rick Research

    From Glenn's discovery of the never published manuscript Luftwaffe 1944 "A2" Seniority List

    von Lindeiner was promoted to Oberst 1.4.42 #76 in the flying corps-- though not an aviator.

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