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 Becklingen

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AuthorMessage
brum
FM
FM


Number of posts : 2808
Age : 76
Localisation : Sandbach Cheshire
Cap Badge : RA/QOH
Places Served : JLRRA (Hereford) Nienburg Paderborn Colchester Munster Maresfield (Cyprus) Hohne Hemer Op Banner x4 Woolwich
Registration date : 2010-03-02

PostSubject: Becklingen   8/2/2014, 22:26


Those among us who were involved with the more lethal side of soldiering, will recall that the firing ranges, (Hohne, Munsterlager und so weiter), used to close on the weekend.
With the ranges closed, units were faced with the problem of how to occupy and amuse thousands of pimply adolescents, who were inclined to get into trouble at the drop of a hat.
Soldiers were offered a variety of diversions - they could have a look at Belsen, they could go for a swim, (there was a very good sand pit near one of the 8in how. firing positions), or they could visit the CWGC cemetery at Becklingen.
Sated by the other temptations on offer, a group of us stopped off one day at Becklingen, a cemetery that was established to take in all the dead that died in the last six months of the war and were buried in graves scattered around the area.
We hadn't been wandering around very long when a "Wee Jock" appeared. Jock was one of hundreds of men employed by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission and wore a battledress - type uniform, similar to the one worn by the MSO.
Jock went around the cemetery with us and was a mine of information.
"See that one there?", he'd say,"he was the youngest VC of the war". "See him ?, first man across the Rhine".
One of our group asked why some RAF headstones were spaced out, whereas others were in a group. The explanation we got was that sometimes, when a plane crashed, although the authorities knew the names of the crew, the individual bodies could not be identified.
Our visit was in the 70s and, no doubt "Wee Jock" is no longer with us. The knowledge that bloke had will have died with him.
It's sad that people who visit military cemeteries nowadays look reverently at the rows of gravestones but know nothing of the stories behind them.
It's moving that people ARE still visiting military cemeteries.
Long may it continue so.



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Shelldrake
FM
FM
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Number of posts : 2991
Localisation : Camberley
Cap Badge : Royal Artillery
Places Served : Troon, Lippstadt, Devizes, NI, Paderborn, Dortmund, Colchester, Belize, Canada, Cyprus, Gutersloh
Registration date : 2010-10-26

PostSubject: Re: Becklingen   9/2/2014, 08:12

I have visited that cemetery several times, a very moving experience, apparently a few of the 'planes were shot down returning from bombing missions in and around Hamburg. Incidentally, I knew the first guy over the Rhine, his name was Alex Buskie, a Gunner, who was serving with the BW at the time - made the crossing in the back of a Buffalo. He told me that one night in the NAAFI when I was just 18!! I'm sure Dee Z will confirm it. Suspect 
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brum
FM
FM


Number of posts : 2808
Age : 76
Localisation : Sandbach Cheshire
Cap Badge : RA/QOH
Places Served : JLRRA (Hereford) Nienburg Paderborn Colchester Munster Maresfield (Cyprus) Hohne Hemer Op Banner x4 Woolwich
Registration date : 2010-03-02

PostSubject: Re: Becklingen   9/2/2014, 09:54

Well, Wee Jock said it was a captain, Royal Marines but hey ho !
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Dee Z
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Number of posts : 163
Age : 72
Cap Badge : RA
Places Served : Pembroke Dock, Lippstadt,Plymouth, Middle east, Singapore
Registration date : 2011-07-15

PostSubject: Re: Becklingen   9/2/2014, 10:05

Shelldrake wrote:
I have visited that cemetery several times, a very moving experience, apparently a few of the 'planes were shot down returning from bombing missions in and around Hamburg.   Incidentally, I knew the first guy over the Rhine, his name was Alex Buskie, a Gunner, who was serving with the BW at the time - made the crossing in the back of a Buffalo.   He told me that one night in the NAAFI when I was just 18!!   I'm sure Dee Z will confirm it. Suspect 


I remember Alex was he not in the Regt football team ? Sadly I never got to hear of his wartime exploits. One thing I remember about Alex was he had a wonderful voice while on ablution fatigues he would serenade all us young gunners while we went about our work
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Shelldrake
FM
FM
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Number of posts : 2991
Localisation : Camberley
Cap Badge : Royal Artillery
Places Served : Troon, Lippstadt, Devizes, NI, Paderborn, Dortmund, Colchester, Belize, Canada, Cyprus, Gutersloh
Registration date : 2010-10-26

PostSubject: Re: Becklingen   9/2/2014, 12:14

Dee Z wrote:
Shelldrake wrote:
I have visited that cemetery several times, a very moving experience, apparently a few of the 'planes were shot down returning from bombing missions in and around Hamburg.   Incidentally, I knew the first guy over the Rhine, his name was Alex Buskie, a Gunner, who was serving with the BW at the time - made the crossing in the back of a Buffalo.   He told me that one night in the NAAFI when I was just 18!!   I'm sure Dee Z will confirm it. Suspect 


I remember Alex was he not in the Regt football team ? Sadly I never got to hear of his wartime exploits. One thing I remember about Alex was he had a wonderful voice while on ablution fatigues he would serenade all us young gunners while we went about our work

He was indeed, Jack. He originally hailed from the Gorbals and his wife was from Gib, she had a fantastic Spanish/Glasgow accent. Laughing 
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brum
FM
FM


Number of posts : 2808
Age : 76
Localisation : Sandbach Cheshire
Cap Badge : RA/QOH
Places Served : JLRRA (Hereford) Nienburg Paderborn Colchester Munster Maresfield (Cyprus) Hohne Hemer Op Banner x4 Woolwich
Registration date : 2010-03-02

PostSubject: Re: Becklingen   10/2/2014, 11:16

All this time that people have been looking at the headstone of a Captain, Royal Marines in Becklingen cemetery and saying "He was the first man across the Rhine" and all this time he's been singing to young gunners on ablutions fatigues.

Alleluja, it's a bleedin' miracle !  cheers 
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Shelldrake
FM
FM
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Number of posts : 2991
Localisation : Camberley
Cap Badge : Royal Artillery
Places Served : Troon, Lippstadt, Devizes, NI, Paderborn, Dortmund, Colchester, Belize, Canada, Cyprus, Gutersloh
Registration date : 2010-10-26

PostSubject: Re: Becklingen   10/2/2014, 13:15

Alex could have been the driver so, theoretically................. scratch 
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