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Issue Number 32

The 17. SS “Götz von Berlichingen” (PA) War Journal



Once again, the call for reinforcements went out to defend the homeland from the Allied hordes at a distant corner of the West Front. The 17th “GvB” Aufklärungs Abteilung motored its way to Odessa, NY to fend off the impending attack on September 9-11, 2005. Members present were:

Untersturmfuhrer Dwayne Slepetz                   Schutze Chris Karr

Unterscharfuhrer Bill Person                           Schutze Jim McGuire

Rottenfuhrer Randy Knauss                             Schutze George Skrapits

Oberschutze Allen Brenneman                        Cook Steve Karr         

Oberschutze Robert Brenneman                     Schutze Rekrut Doug Perdick

Oberschutze Marc Kawalsky                            Associate Ryan Crawford

      Our Freunden from the 9th WSS Hohenstaufen had staked out a wooded area for us to camp and Schutze Chris Karr and Cook Karr were already there ready to fill our empty stomachs after the long journey. Zeltbahns went up, equipment and weapons were stacked, and meetings were attended to. The wetter was warm and dry with it getting cool as evening fell. We Soldaten retired early to be ready tomorrow to face the Amis and Brits.

Dawn arrived all too soon and we crawled out of our blankets to start brewing Kaffee or get that first Zigarette going. Schutze Rkt. Perdick and Assoc. Crawford were the last up. The dreams of pretty Frauleins must have been good! Cook Karr whipped up a tasty Morganessen then we dressed for war. Schutze McGuire made sure that his 98k/MG13 mag conversion rifle was in working order as well as Oberschutze Kawalsky with the Panzerschreck. Us Soldaten then posed for a unit shot with the Abteilung’s new mascot, a ceramic forest gnome that was “acquired” from some French yard during our strategic withdrawal back to the Heimat. The figurine was also painted up to strikingly resemble our kleine Unterscharfuhrer! Investigations and severe penalties are pending.

Uscha. Person called our gruppe to attention and we marched in step to the assembly point. Several other squads were already there including WSS, Fallschirmjager, Heer and Gebirgsjager. The faithful Hochsgebirgs-gruppe Groth greeted us as we assembled next to them. Ustuf. Slepetz was called away as he was needed on command duties.

            “GvB” then moved out following Grossdeutschland up to a tree line overlooking rolling fields. The command was given and we were off with Rttf. Knauss leading the way. Oberschutze Robert Brenneman caressed his Mauser’s trigger, hungry for targets.

             We marched to a grove of trees that vehicles from Hohenstaufen had taken refuge in. Our Panzerjager team of Oberschutze Kawalsky and Schutze McGuire covered the road next to a minefield while the rest of us formed perimeter duty. This area was reconned the night before by Rttf. Knauss, Oberschutze Allen Brenneman, Oberschutze Kawalsky, Schutze Rkt. Perdick and Assoc. Crawford. We hoped this would give us an advantage over the Yankee dogs.

             Hauptsturmfuhrer Doyle of the 9th WSS needed a group to cover on flank in some hedgerows and the 17th was called up. Uscha. Person led Rttf. Knauss, Schutze Rkt. Perdick and Assoc. Crawford down the hill and into the brush. Our little gruppe made it close to the road on the lower end when the Amis were spotted. We notified our findings by radio then sat in perfect camouflage and watched.

             Apparently the Allies were too lazy to move out so our kammeraden attacked then from the far side of the filed to get them off the road. Fierce fighting was heard. We then spotted two Soldaten creeping up on and American officer who was watching the action. They couldn’t get him to surrender so a Handgranate was thrown and our two brave Soldaten hurried back to safety. The Yanks sent a squad after them but we took a number of them out with accurate long range rifle fire. We later found out that the two brave souls were Oberschutze Allen Brenneman and Schutze Chris Karr!

             Our recon group then was called back to the hilltop while some Allied scout planes darted around. It turned out that we weren’t needed so the 17th “GvB” broke up inot two sections and went back down the hill to drive the Amis off the road. Our beloved Ustuf. Slepetz joined in as well. Soldaten from the 12th WSS “Hitlerjugend” and others bolstered our push. Rttf. Knauss led one part into the underbrush and ducked just in time as a Yank raised his rifle to fire. These advance scouts were eliminated and we moved further dow.

             Once on the road, a bottleneck ensued so Uscha. Person took Oberschutze Kawalsky, Schutze McGuire, and Schutze Chris Karr around to catch the Yanks on their flank. At a clearing we bumped into Rttf. Knauss already there merrily taking out the enemy with his Gewehr.

             For some unknown reason, the Yanks kept to the road and didn’t cover their flanks. This blunder allowed us to hit them on their sides and start rolling them back to the village. Uscha. Person’s gruppe kept nailing the enemy with rifle grenade fire while Ustuf. Slepetz was heard on the far side of the road pushing the others on. Schutze Chris Karr took out the one enemy sniper on our flank.

             Oberschutze Kawalsky spotted an opening through the last hedgerow and our patrol snuck along the low side of a filed, through the opening, and on until we were behind the enemy lines. We got to the village and were almost all over a road and in positions when the sleepy Allied sentry finally realized who we were. Uscha. Person diverted their attention with constant fire while Schutze Kawalsky took out a few Amis who didn’t notice him in a bush. Rttf. Knauss and Schutze McGuire used his large capacity Gewehr to deadly effect. The Yankee dogs didn’t know which way to turn!

             After a bit, the fighting died away. The 17th moved into the village and replenished our Wasser from a well. Where did the Allies go? With the village secure, we marched back to our encampment thinking that the enemy had been destroyed in the flanking attacks. It was later reported that one unit commander didn’t cover his assigned position and the enemy got away down the road. We all hoped that this commander was now watching his position – hanging from a tree by a noose!

             A warm and hearty meal from our faithful Cook Karr helped raise our morale. We all rested around the fire sharing tales from today’s action. Of course, the tales told by Ustuf. Slepetz were the tallest by far!

             A small night recon was wanted to see if any Allies still lingered in the area. Ustuf. Slepetz, Uscha. Person, and Schutze Chris Karr offered their services. A few flares and quick skirmishes were noted. The only excitement came when our Soldaten found themselves mixed up in an Ami patrol! Luckily the darkness allowed them to escape unharmed even though one Yank was heard saying that “one of those guy’s hats doesn’t look right!” Of course, they meant our Ustuf.’s distinctive Schirmutze!

             Everyone returned to camp okay and sleep came quickly. By next morning, the 17th “GvB” was packed and on its way to another section of the front to defend the homeland!


After-Action Report

October 21-23  Hamburg, PA

November 18-20  Torrance, PA

·         Ustuf. Slepetz wants to remind everyone that he and his Frau plan to go to California in October 2006. Part of the vacation includes attending an event with our West Coast detachment with Kurt Swartley. Everyone is invited to come along so start saving your pennies! 

                                                                                                 Unterscharfuhrer Person