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Groupings and Individual Soldier's History Archive Forum Dedicated to the personal history of individual soldiers - any war, any country. One thread per individual. No 'looking for' or general comment threads.

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Old 04-07-2017, 08:34 PM   #46
Paulus_Gun
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The telegram to his mother that he is finally coming home.
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Old 04-07-2017, 08:36 PM   #47
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His Entlassungsschein or certificate of discharge.
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Old 04-07-2017, 08:40 PM   #48
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16. Life after his release (December 1947 – September 1950)

After his release he wanted to return to his old job at Reederei Bernard Howaldt. However, because of the war that company lost much of its cargo, and therefore there were no job opportunities for Hans-Jürgen. Instead he got a job on February 14th 1948 as a mailman for Postamt Flensburg until April 23rd. On April 26th he started his job at Feldmühle A.G. in Flensburg where he was employed as an assistant. In the near future he was supposed to get a new function as a salesman, but this did not happen, therefore he felt deceived and left the job by autumn 1948. It is not known what became of his profession after October 1948, but sources indicate that he became a salesman anyway.
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Old 04-07-2017, 08:42 PM   #49
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Hans-Jürgen with an unidentified woman. Please note that he is holding a cigarette and not wearing a wedding ring. He was a bachelor without issue.
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Old 04-07-2017, 08:49 PM   #50
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17. Suicide in München (September 1950)

Hans-Jürgen did not live long, and after the incredible life story shown in this thread, it is truly sad to end with the following:

On September 16th 1950 around 18:15, at age 27, Hans-Jürgen committed suicide by jumping off the Groβhesseloher Brücke, which is a railway bridge close to München. The bridge is notorious as a popular spot for committing suicide, with 290 deaths occurring there between 1877 and 1978. After a renovation in 1985, they removed the path in order to reduce the number of deaths. Hans-Jürgen was cremated shortly after.

It will remain a mystery what brought him to his deed, but documents suggest that probably among other reasons he was unsatisfied with his job, as well as being unable to cope with the loss of his father and his war experience.

And this is unfortunately how the life story of Obergefreiter Hans-Jürgen Dethlefs ends.
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Old 04-07-2017, 10:10 PM   #51
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Wonderful research and presentation, a sad story but powerful.

Thanks

Angel
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Old 04-08-2017, 02:56 AM   #52
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Great effort made and a wonderfull tribute to him.Sadly it came with an ending that I did not expected

But in a strange way ...he still isn't forgotten !

Thanks for showing
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Old 04-08-2017, 01:09 PM   #53
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Great presentation! An interesting story, long before PTSD.
Jeff
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Old 04-08-2017, 03:20 PM   #54
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An amazing grouping which you have presented so well! It's ultimately a sad story, but Hans-Jürgen is not forgotten.

Regards,
Michael
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Old 04-09-2017, 06:30 AM   #55
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War

Without doubt you have researched and compiled an excellent military career history of this man, with remarkable detail and effort.

A really interesting however, ultimatly sad history. This research piece would make an excellent magazine article.

Regards Richard.
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Old 04-09-2017, 07:17 AM   #56
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Thanks everyone for the kind words. It is indeed ultimately a sad story, but by sharing his grouping his story lives on. I really like how it gives a unique insight in the mind of one of millions: a man with no significant background; someone who feared for the safety of his family; someone who was somewhat indifferent about the national socialist regime, but cared about the survival of the German state.

By the way, I have noticed in my map that I created a new town by combining the names of Volgograd and Novgorod. It should of course be the latter.
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Old 04-09-2017, 09:42 AM   #57
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Excellent story-telling. Because of you this soldier's memory will live on. A sad end, indeed. Bob
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Old 04-09-2017, 05:30 PM   #58
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Thanks for showing & telling this sad story of war, it would seem he had what's now called Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome or similar - lots of vets are also struggling with now.

Poor man great story, there must have been thousands like him.
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Old 04-11-2017, 11:33 AM   #59
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This is one of the best reading I ever experienced in this forum.
Thanks a lot for such herculean job and for taking your time to post it here.
It is real sad how the war kept causing so much pain and losses of lives many years after the last shot had been fired.
Douglas.
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Old 04-14-2017, 06:05 PM   #60
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Thanks everyone for the replies!
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