About WWII Quiz
|October 18th, 2005||#1|
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WWII Quiz info
After a fixed period of time after the correct answer is confirmed (i.e. two days) if the original person to answer has not submitted a new question, the forum becomes open for new questions by someone else.
If possible, please post a source with your answer.
Who was the only American to serve with both the US Army and Russian Army in WWII?
Last edited by tomtom22; August 17th, 2007 at 02:17..
|October 18th, 2005||#5|
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Ok, I'll give some more hints.
He was sent to Stalag III-C in Poland.
The Russian unit he was with was a tank regiment commanded by a woman Major.
He was offered a scholarship to the University of Notre Dame, but turned it down to join the Airborne.
|October 19th, 2005||#7|
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Corporal Dale Thatcher
Wait i was wrong this is the real guy.
Joseph "Jumpin' Joe" Beyrle (1923-2004) was the only known soldier to have served in both the United States Army and the Soviet Army. Born in Muskegon, Michigan, Beryle graduated from high school in 1942 with a scholarship to the University of Notre Dame but enlisted in the army instead.
Enlisting in 1942, he chose to become a paratrooper, joining the 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment of the 101st Airborne's "Screaming Eagles" division, specialising in radio communications and demolition, and was first stationed in Ramsbury, England to prepare for the upcoming Allied invasion from the west. After nine months of training, Beyrle completed two missions in occupied France in April and May 1944, delivering gold to the French Resistance.
On June 6, D-Day, Beyrle's C-47 came under enemy fire over the Normandy coast, and was forced to jump from the exceedingly low altitude of 120 metres. After landing in Ste Come Du Mont, sergeant Beyrle lost contact with his fellow paratroopers, and succeeding in blowing up a power station, and performed other sabotage missions before being captured by German soldiers a few days later.
Over the next seven months, Beyrle was held in seven different Nazi prisons, escaping twice only to be recaptured. Beyrle and his fellow prisoners had been hoping to find the Soviet army, which was a short distance away. After the second escape, Beyrle was turned over to the Gestapo by a German civilian. Beaten and tortured, he was released to the German military after officials stepped in and determined that the Gestapo had no jurisdiction over prisoners of war.
Beyrle was taken to the Stalag III-C POW camp in Alt Drewitz, from which he escaped in early January 1945. He headed east, hoping to meet up with the Soviet army. Encountering a Soviet tank brigade in the middle of January—reportedly holding his "hands up and [saying], 'Amerikansky tovarishch, Amerikansky tovarishch"—Beyrle convinced the brigade's commanders to allow him to fight alongside the unit on its way to Berlin, beginning his month-long stint in a Soviet tank battalion, where his demolitions expertise was appreciated.
Beyrle's new battalion was the one that freed his former camp, Stalag 3-C, at the end of January, but in the first week of February, he was wounded during an attack by German Stuka dive bombers. He was evacuated to a Soviet hospital in Landsberg (now Gorzów Wielkopolski in Poland), where he received a visit from Soviet Marshal Georgy Zhukov, who, intrigued by the only non-Russian in the hospital, learned his story through an interpreter, and provided Beyrle with official papers in order to rejoin American forces.
Joining a Soviet military convoy, Beyrle arrived at the U.S. Embassy in Moscow, only to learn that he had been classified by the Pentagon as KIA on 10 June 1944 on French soil, and forced to prove his identity from his fingerprints.
Beyrle returned home to Michigan on 21 April 1945, and celebrated V-E Day two weeks later in Muskegon.
After leaving the U.S. Army, Beyrle worked for Brunswick Corporation for 28 years, retiring as a shipping supervisor.
His unique service earned him medals from U.S. President Bill Clinton and President Boris Yeltsin on the 50th anniversary of D-Day in 1994.
Beyrle died in his sleep of heart failure on December 12, 2004 during a visit to Toccoa, Georgia (the town where he trained with the parachute troops in 1942). He was 81.
His son, John Beyrle, is currently deputy chief of mission at the U.S. Embassy in Moscow.
On 17 September 2002, a book by Thomas Taylor about Beyrle, The Simple Sounds of Freedom, was published by Random House. A paperback version, Behind Hitler's Lines, came out 1 June 2004.
Last edited by DTop; January 5th, 2006 at 21:41.. Reason: double