Heinrich Pecker (*1927), D-17328 Sommersdorf, Kreis Pasewalk
- Translated by Leslie Riggle, Wichita / Kansas -
In March 1944 I reported to Military Training Camp in Deutschkrone for 4 weeks. I was there until June. I was in the Labor Service at Schneidemühl until October. On 17 October 1944 I was inducted into the German Army in Stettin, then sent to Kalisch at Posen. In December 1944 I was sent to the front at Litzmannstadt. I was wounded and sent to the field hospital at Bad Schmiedeberg.
In January 1945 I was granted convalescent leave to Groß Tuchen and spent 2 to 3 days at home. I departed from Groß Tuchen to my new replacement center. I began in Stolp, war reinducted, uniformed and sent on the march to Bütow. I was billeted 4 to 5 days in the castle and I experienced air raids in Bütow. I looked for Dr. Harthun, but many citizens of Bütow were already gone. On the first evening I went by bicycle to Groß Tuchen for the last time. My mother and siblings were still there. From Bütow I was again sent to the front near Konitz. After a few days we retreated toward Reckow, Damsdorf, Groß Tuchen along the Adolf-Hitler-Damm. Our headquarters were in the Jacobi forestry office. Again we retreated toward Bütow, and through Bütow, and further toward Parchau-Sullenschin-Danzig. Bütow was a dead city. I was wounded again, this time by shrapnel in my right knee, near Danzig on 17 March 1945. On 19 March I was shot, again in the right knee. On 22 March 1945 I was evacuated by ship from Danzig and was taken to a field hospital in Viborg, Denmark. In August 1945, after my release from the hospital, I was taken to a reception center.
In September 1945 I was taken to Flensburg-Malente-Pernitz. There we were attached to an English Army unit and I was assigned guard duty for the military police. I was released at Pentecost 1946. I located my parents and siblings through the church offices in Greifswald. After he was released from a Russian prisoner of war camp, my father had reported to Greifswald to request a pastorate. Since the pastorate in Sommersdorf was vacant, he was permitted to occupy this position. Toward the end of June 1946 I arrived in Sommersdorf at the home of my parents.
I then applied to the machinist school in Wismar. Mr. Wotschke (Groß Tuchen) registered me there. After a two year apprenticeship as a locksmith I received the news that my application had been turned down. The reason: my father was an intellectual (pastor). In 1948 I met my wife, Hanna Kuckenbecker. I ran a farm of 44 hectares (110 acres). At the beginning of 1948 the farm was confiscated. Later we received the farm again. It was a difficult beginning. My father-in-law had been transported to Neubrandenburg (Fünfeichen) by the Russians. After three weeks he was released, deathly ill, and he died here in Sommersdorf four days later. We married in October 1949. My father performed the ceremony. We have four children, two boys and two girls, and six grandchildren. From March 1953 until 1990 I worked at the collective here in Sommersdorf as a gasoline station attendant and as an electrician.
21. January 1995, s/Heinrich Pecker