Thursday, April 2

Poor Dead Bastards

OGEFR. HUB. BRIEDENBACH, 8.8.24 + 11.6.44
We visit the German cemetery in La Cambe with its small parking-lot and no visitors. It is striking to see the U20s, and those gravestones marked after June 6, 1944, when a soldier's death would have been meaningless.

La Cambe was originally the site of a battlefield cemetery, established by the US Army Graves Registration Service during the war, where American and German soldiers, sailors and airmen were buried in two adjacent fields.

After the war ended on the continent and parallelling the work to repair the devastation, work began on exhuming the American remains and transferring them in accordance with the wishes of their families. Beginning in 1945, the Americans transferred two-thirds of their fallen from this site back to the United States while the remainder were reinterred at the American Cemetery overlooking Omaha Beach.

Because of the pace of the war, the German war dead in Normandy were scattered over a wide area, many of them buried in isolated field graves - or small battlefield cemeteries. In the years following the war, the German War Graves Commission (Volksbund Deutsche Kriegsgräberfürsorge) sought to establish six main German cemeteries in the Normandy area.

La Cambe covers over 21,000 German dead. 
(Source: Site, edited)