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Joerg - Thanks for the background on the Dienstlaufbahnabzeichen. I've looked for information on Fallschirm- and Rettungsdienst on the internet and there is not much. From what I've found they were responsible for maintaining parachutes and survival equipment for Air Force flight personnel as well as conducting parachute training. I'm waiting on a book from Germany on the FRD, its an autobiography, "Kameradschaft am Fallschirm. Mein Weg zum Leiter des Fallschirm- und Rettungsdienstes der LSK/LV der Nationalen Volksarmee" by Horst Schöll. Kevin

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Joerg - Thanks for the background on the Dienstlaufbahnabzeichen. I've looked for information on Fallschirm- and Rettungsdienst on the internet and there is not much. From what I've found they were responsible for maintaining parachutes and survival equipment for Air Force flight personnel as well as conducting parachute training. I'm waiting on a book from Germany on the FRD, its an autobiography, "Kameradschaft am Fallschirm. Mein Weg zum Leiter des Fallschirm- und Rettungsdienstes der LSK/LV der Nationalen Volksarmee" by Horst Schöll. Kevin

Kevin,

I was told the Book is good.

Joerg

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  • 3 weeks later...

I had a friend bring me the book from Germany this week and it is excellent. I'm still in the Chapter about the 1950's, but basically the FRD was responsible for maintaining parachutes and aircraft survival equipment for the Air Force as well as conducting parachute, rescue and safety equipment training for pilots and aircrew. It's like a combination of the US Parachute Rigger, Jumpmaster and Airborne School black hat. I believe there were small detachments of the FRD at every LSK airfield.

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I had a friend bring me the book from Germany this week and it is excellent. I'm still in the Chapter about the 1950's, but basically the FRD was responsible for maintaining parachutes and aircraft survival equipment for the Air Force as well as conducting parachute, rescue and safety equipment training for pilots and aircrew. It's like a combination of the US Parachute Rigger, Jumpmaster and Airborne School black hat. I believe there were small detachments of the FRD at every LSK airfield.

As far as I know yes. We also had them at our jump base in Burg near the city of Magdeburg. Have fun with your book!

Regards,

Joerg

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  • 8 months later...

Hello all, as I have stated on other threads in this section, I have a 14 year old son who is interested in collecting DDR items. He found a para uniform (EM Dress) with collar tabs and boards, and an extra set of officer FJ tabs for $75.00 USD. I let him do the purchase but I have misgivings as my knowledge of DDR items is limited to when the wall came down and $75.00 USD would have just about completed your collection:D . Can anyone let me know if he was in the ballpark here, and where these things are in value? I would appreciate it and any other advice you may have for him. He would surely listen to other collectors before he listens to dad... Thanks, Scott.

I will have him post pics when he gets it.

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Hi Scott,

it's quiet cheap - provided that it's a real one! I've seen a couple of phantasy versions which have been sold as "real" NVA Paratrooper uniforms. However please post some pics and i can give you my input!

Cheers,

Joerg

Hello all, as I have stated on other threads in this section, I have a 14 year old son who is interested in collecting DDR items. He found a para uniform (EM Dress) with collar tabs and boards, and an extra set of officer FJ tabs for $75.00 USD. I let him do the purchase but I have misgivings as my knowledge of DDR items is limited to when the wall came down and $75.00 USD would have just about completed your collection:D . Can anyone let me know if he was in the ballpark here, and where these things are in value? I would appreciate it and any other advice you may have for him. He would surely listen to other collectors before he listens to dad... Thanks, Scott.

I will have him post pics when he gets it.

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Hi, my son received his uniform today and the para collar tabs have clearly been added and another type removed. I questioned the seller for him and here is the response I got.

"Actually that is the original insignia it came with(at least that's the way it came out of East Germany back in 1991). That is very common for the paratrooper uniforms to have had prior insignia removed as when the recruits first were assigned to the para training unit they wore the standart long style army enlisted collar tabs and army shoulder boards. Upon graduating the paratrooper school they were issued a set of paratrooper collar tabs and shoulder boards to replace the regular army one's in their current uniform. So the army one's were removed and the para one's were sewn on. Sometimes machine sewn and sometimes hand sewn. I only have another one and is exactly the same way."

Can anyone verify this statement before I send the set back. I just don't have the knowledge on DDR items to help my son, so I am hoping you guys can. Itis not a lot of money for most of us, but for a 14 year old it is, and I don't want to see him taken advantage of. Thank you Joerg, for your previous answer. Scott.

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That response is rubbish. These uniforms came from supply with the proper collar tabs sewn on. I have nearly a dozen NVA para uniforms and they all have originally sewn on orange collar tabs. There was no separate "paratrooper school" in the NVA. NVA paratroopers had extensive pre-military parachute training with the Gesellschaft für Sport und Technik (GST)(Society for Sport and Technology).

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Scott,

Ehrentitle is right! Our uniforms came from the supply ready (almost) made! The collars have been usually on already. The shoulder boards where removable and have been added only when everybody received his uniform and according to his rank! The only thing we had to add (hand sewing) was later on the silver arrow on the arm which indicates that youre serving for 3 years!

Please see attached a picture from our swearing-in in November 1986 (Winter Uniform!). This was just two or three weeks after our convocation (hope this is the right word). Our "Basic training" was finished 3 months later!

A para trooperschool did not exists in our unit and our pre-army training was carried out -as Ehrentitle already mentioned- in the GST organisation. I did mine over a period of two years where I was mainly trainied in Para-jumping, shooting, truck driving, endurance training etc.

Kind regards,

Joerg

post-7482-015342900 1286519465_thumb.jpg

Edited by joergd
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Thanks to Ehrentitle and Joerg once again. While my son is less than thrilled with the idea that his uniform is assembled and not original, he has learned a valuable lesson about researching things in advance;) . I have contacted the seller for a refund and will be returning his uniform today. If anyone would like to part with one for a young collector, please let me know and I will pass it along to my son. I have been thinking about letting him set up his own GMIC account but he still has much to learn. Scott.

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Scott,

Your son is not alone in buying something and then doing the research. We have all done that and will probably do it again.

As for setting up a separate GMIC account for your son, I think that is a good idea. Browsing forums on the GMIC, and other DDR forum such as the one on WAF, will help him gain knowledge. You will find ehrentitle on the WAF as well. I think the DDR forum on the WAF is more advanced than the one on the GMIC but it costs $25.00 a year there to be able to post pictures. To me that is a minor fee for the advantage of interfacing with many knowledgable collectors although some people object to haveing to pay to post pictures.

As for made up tunics, that is probably going to be the norm from now on. Most original tunics were scooped up years ago so your son needs to learn what was sewn on where, in what time period and how it was sewn on. There will be differences of opinion here and he will need to study these things before he draws his own conclusions. But then, the research is most of the fun!

Regards,

Gordon

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Scott,

Your son is not alone in buying something and then doing the research. We have all done that and will probably do it again.

As for setting up a separate GMIC account for your son, I think that is a good idea. Browsing forums on the GMIC, and other DDR forum such as the one on WAF, will help him gain knowledge. You will find ehrentitle on the WAF as well. I think the DDR forum on the WAF is more advanced than the one on the GMIC but it costs $25.00 a year there to be able to post pictures. To me that is a minor fee for the advantage of interfacing with many knowledgable collectors although some people object to haveing to pay to post pictures.

As for made up tunics, that is probably going to be the norm from now on. Most original tunics were scooped up years ago so your son needs to learn what was sewn on where, in what time period and how it was sewn on. There will be differences of opinion here and he will need to study these things before he draws his own conclusions. But then, the research is most of the fun!

Regards,

Gordon

Thanks Gordon, I generally let him use my account when he wants to, I just ask him to let me do the posting. I bought a fairly large batch of DDR items when they became available in 1989 and have passed them on to him as he enjoys them. (At the time of purchase it was a whim) I was curious about the DDR items.... I must admit that browsing this thread has peaked my old curiosity as there are many beautiful uniforms out there. But one can't collect everything. Thanks for the help. Scott.

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  • 1 month later...

With regard to the colour of the DDR's Airborne beret; it simply matched the designated branch colour for Airborne troops. The rank insignia, uniform piping and beret were all done in this particular orange colour (except in the field, of course). This colour was the traditional colour of Airborne Troops since the Third Reich (the Luftwaffe Airborne used more or less the same colour). I doubt seriously that vanity was involved here.

LW Fallschirmjäger waffenfarbe was yellow as per LW flight personnel. Exceptions included black for members of airborne engineer and pioneer sub-units and blue for medical sub-units.

PK

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QUOTE (Claudius @ Jul 7 2009, 19:40 ) Here are two officer paratrooper berets; field grey and orange. If the orange was just for parades, was the field grey for everyday wear? Why not wear the orange every day? Is this a common segregation among paratroopers of all nations?

Grey was for wear with the field uniform and Orange with the dress uniform. I can't speak for other countries, but US Airborne forces only wear one color beret, Maroon.

Hi Guys,

here a Pic of our Unit in Parade Uniform. The Parade Uniform contained the orange Barett, the normal presentation Jacket, a so called "Steghose" (sorry i don't know the word in English!) and the Jump-Shoes!

As you see the each of us is wearing only a few of the badges as it's in our first year of service!

Cheers,

Joerg

post-7482-008160300 1289848903_thumb.jpg

Edited by joergd
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One other area on para collecting that is not purely military are collecting the sport parachute badges of the Flug und Fallschirmsportverband der DDR (FFSV) which in English would be something like the Federation for Aerial and Parachute Sports. These sports parachute badges are often mistakenly described as freefall parachute badges. Below is my collection of these badges which is close to completion.

The badges in the top row were issued from 1982-1990 with the exception of the bronze level badge with white between the parachute lines, this was only issued 1980-81. The badges in the second row were issued 1957-1979. The bottom row are earlier versions of that badge without provision for numbered hangers. I've never actually seen hangers for these badges so my assumption are that they are quite rare.

Nothing really to do with the official badges of our Paratroopers but here is the first version of our Reservists Club we have formed in 1992. This version was scraped when we changed our club's name.

Cheers,

Joerg

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One other area on para collecting that is not purely military are collecting the sport parachute badges of the Flug und Fallschirmsportverband der DDR (FFSV) which in English would be something like the Federation for Aerial and Parachute Sports. These sports parachute badges are often mistakenly described as freefall parachute badges. Below is my collection of these badges which is close to completion.

The badges in the top row were issued from 1982-1990 with the exception of the bronze level badge with white between the parachute lines, this was only issued 1980-81. The badges in the second row were issued 1957-1979. The bottom row are earlier versions of that badge without provision for numbered hangers. I've never actually seen hangers for these badges so my assumption are that they are quite rare.

Nothing really to do with the official badges of our Paratroopers but here is the first version of our Reservists Club badge we have formed in 1992.

Cheers,

Joerg

post-7482-006061700 1289849372_thumb.jpg

Edited by joergd
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  • 1 month later...

My son just received a DDR EM para beret in grey, he is quite happy but this seems to have spurred his desire to get an orange em and officer beret. Anyone have any suggestions of where he may look to find these? Thanks, Scott.

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Nothing really to do with the official badges of our Paratroopers but here is the first version of our Reservists Club badge we have formed in 1992.

Cheers,

Joerg

Joerg,

Do you still have your uniform? How many years did you serve in the paratroops? What was your final ranking upon getting out of the Army?

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Joerg,

Do you still have your uniform? How many years did you serve in the paratroops? What was your final ranking upon getting out of the Army?

Dear Paul,

I served the usual 3 years in our unit! All Paratroopers served these 3 years! Only the newly formed "Heavy Company" a Artillery support unit which was Airborne mainly by Helicopters served 18months!

We finished our full 3 years as the last unit before the Wall cam down. All other units after us where not able to finish their full service period!

My final rank was "Stabsgefreiter" this as the usual rank for a Paratrooper in his 3rd year of Service. Only if you re-directed into a Sergeant "direction" you where able to receive the rank of an "Unteroffizier" etc.

Merry Christmas!

Joerg

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My son just received a DDR EM para beret in grey, he is quite happy but this seems to have spurred his desire to get an orange em and officer beret. Anyone have any suggestions of where he may look to find these? Thanks, Scott.

Scott,

please check here....maybe you find something! There are some Paratroopers items (if its not proper labeled in English please check all items with "Fallschirmjäger".

Merry Christmas!

Joerg

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Scott,

please check here....maybe you find something! There are some Paratroopers items (if its not proper labeled in English please check all items with "Fallschirmjäger".

Merry Christmas!

Joerg

Sorry here the link:

http://www.militaria321.com/suchergebnisse.cfm?q=nva&adv=0&searchcat=0&startat=26&groupsize=25

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Dear Paul,

I served the usual 3 years in our unit! All Paratroopers served these 3 years! Only the newly formed "Heavy Company" a Artillery support unit which was Airborne mainly by Helicopters served 18months!

We finished our full 3 years as the last unit before the Wall cam down. All other units after us where not able to finish their full service period!

My final rank was "Stabsgefreiter" this as the usual rank for a Paratrooper in his 3rd year of Service. Only if you re-directed into a Sergeant "direction" you where able to receive the rank of an "Unteroffizier" etc.

Merry Christmas!

Joerg

Thank you and Merry Christmas.

Was it a difficult option to stay in the military for a lifelong career, if you wanted to? What decorations did you acquire during your time in the service? Were you allowed to keep your uniform when you were discharged? Some of the favorite components of my collection are my Fallschirmjager uniforms and the orange beret. Was there a difference between the EM and Officer orange berets?

Did the fallschirmjagers have medical personnel assigned to the units? Did they wear the orange waffenfarbe or the dark green rear services waffenfarbe?

Sorry for the many questions. I have never met a DDR Fallschirmjager before.

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Dear Paul,

I served the usual 3 years in our unit! All Paratroopers served these 3 years! Only the newly formed "Heavy Company" a Artillery support unit which was Airborne mainly by Helicopters served 18months!

We finished our full 3 years as the last unit before the Wall cam down. All other units after us where not able to finish their full service period!

My final rank was "Stabsgefreiter" this as the usual rank for a Paratrooper in his 3rd year of Service. Only if you re-directed into a Sergeant "direction" you where able to receive the rank of an "Unteroffizier" etc.

Merry Christmas!

Joerg

Thank you and Merry Christmas.

Was it a difficult option to stay in the military for a lifelong career, if you wanted to? What decorations did you acquire during your time in the service? Were you allowed to keep your uniform when you were discharged? Some of the favorite components of my collection are my Fallschirmjager uniforms and the orange beret. Was there a difference between the EM and Officer orange berets?

Did the fallschirmjagers have medical personnel assigned to the units? Did they wear the orange waffenfarbe or the dark green rear services waffenfarbe?

Sorry for the many questions. I have never met a DDR Fallschirmjager before.

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Thank you and Merry Christmas.

Was it a difficult option to stay in the military for a lifelong career, if you wanted to? What decorations did you acquire during your time in the service? Were you allowed to keep your uniform when you were discharged? Some of the favorite components of my collection are my Fallschirmjager uniforms and the orange beret. Was there a difference between the EM and Officer orange berets?

Did the fallschirmjagers have medical personnel assigned to the units? Did they wear the orange waffenfarbe or the dark green rear services waffenfarbe?

Sorry for the many questions. I have never met a DDR Fallschirmjager before.

Hello Paul,

To answer your questions from my knowledge:

Theoretically it was not difficult but of course the most suitable and best soldiers have been preferred! I receive most of the possible decorations starting with the the jump badge, the qualification badge (don't ask me in what i've done this but i think it was for LMG = Light Machine Gun), the Schuetzenschnur (don't know how you call it in English), Sport badge and in an separate occasion i received the "Best Soldier" (or something like that) badge from the North Korean army! (I'll post a picture when I'm back in Greece). Sorry that i don't know the names of all these badges in English.

No, officially we where not allowed to keep our Uniforms, but most of us have been clever enough to "organize" their own during the time of service. At the end most of us have had a complete uniform at home then we left the Army.

The Berets where actually the same! The difference was the metal cockade. In the 80's the berets have been adjustable at the back - we actually did not like this version at all and everybody tried to get one from the older years. Getting one of them has often cost a fortune!

Yes we did have a Doctor in our unit who (if I remember) has worn the same uniform as all the other officers.

Kind regards,

Joerg

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Thank you for answering my many questions. I have one of the older style orange berets. I really love them as well. They really compliment a uniform display.

So just to clarify, your doctor wore the regular Fallschirmjager orange insignia? I would have loved to seen his uniform! Do you remember his rank(Hauptmann or etc)?

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