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    Lt. Friedrich Kratina, Observer, KIA 1918

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    Gents, I am hoping some of you experts with access to a Saxon Rangliste and more can help flesh out details about the WW1 service of Lt. Friedrich Kratina. I am hoping to put together a short bio on his military service to include in an upcoming history of Flieger Abt. (A) 213 in Over The Front. Kratina was born in/near Dresden in 9/8/88. He came from a family of noted musicians and was himself an actor of some local note. At some point he joined the army and saw service. According to family lore, he was wounded in action, recuperated and transferred into the air service. He trained as an observer and was posted to FAA 213 (artillery observation/ranging duties) sometime in 1918. Kratina and his pilot Pfeiffer, were killed in action over Meteren/Kemmelberg on July 29, 1918. I speculate that FK may have been an artillery officer prior to becoming an observer as so many other observers in these FAA units were. Attached is a photo showing FK with 3 awards that I assume he earned prior to joining the air service: Albert Order (unknown class), Iron Cross 2nd Class, posibly Friedrich Medal Saxe-Anhalt? His name does not appear in O'Connor" Vol 3 of Aviation Awards of Imperial Germany listing Saxon aviators and their awards. SO, any help with his military service, regiments, dates, awards would be a tremendous help! Thank you! R589ba94b1961d_005FriedrichKratinaLeutnantW1inFabgeschossenvermit(1).jpg.c5f2e5acc3306df7ea28b183f0ac8ff3.jpg

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    According to the Saxon Militär Verordnungsblatt, he was promoted Leutn.d.R. in IR 106 on 16.04.1915.

    An entry in an Oct 1914 casualty lists him as an "Unteroffizier: in Landw. Inf. R. 101 and states he was wounded while serving in the 4th company of that regiment in Aug/Sep 1914

    His marriage registry entry on ancestry lists him as a "Herzoglich Schauspieler und Lt.d.R. vom Gren. R. 101" when he was married on 25.07.1915.

    I also found an entry in a non-public source that he was awarded the SA3bX while serving in IR 192.  No date given.

    At least now you have a few pieces of information to help in your search.


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    Andy! Fantastic work! These are great addition for my work and will be news for the family. FK's records/mementos were lost in the bombing of Dresden 2/45. PLEASE TELL ME what your award designation translates to: SA3bX  ??  (Saxon Albert Cross 3rd Class??) Best! Rob

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    Andy! Thank you for the clarification on the order! An old email to the family was relayed to me this morning stating the award was made 8-28-16 while Lt.d.R. Kratina was serving I.R. 192

    Gunnar! Thank you for this new information re: FK's posting to FAA 213! Glad to have it. I did not know that a posting date was not the actual date one would arrive at a flying unit? You speculate that FK probably arrived earlier in May. Is this a common practice? Rob

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    Walfish, I was afraid you would ask that question :)

    Anyway it will take a while to explain. I will try to make it shortly if possible. In this case I have the information from Tagesbefehle Kofl 4. Yes it very common with a time limit between kommendiert to a unit and versetz to a unit. Versetz is basically not good in a historic perspective but if you dont have the kommendiert date you have to use it. I always* use the kommendiert date if I have that info. Often but far away always it took two too three weeks between being kommendiert and versetz to a unit. For officers the time was generally shorter. It actually exists example of flyers who could have served up too six months before actually being versetz but such things are most of academic value.

    One problem with the kommendiert date is that it is not always is the date when a flyer actually joined the unit, normally it is like plus two Days and minus two Days. That because of kommendiert dates are based on orders, so if you have a flyer in a home land unit it normally took normally days extra, it could also include a few Days of vacation etc. 

    *if you have an KTB, personal diary which says that X arrived on a certain date it is often the best source.


    Edited by Soderbaum
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    "kommandiert" means to serve with that unit but not being an "etaisierter" part of it (not occupying a position that is by the Etat allocated to the unit, officially still belonging to the unit that he came from.

    "versetzt" means being an official "etaisiertes" member of the new unit, changing status/no longer officially being a member of the former unit.


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