KRIEGIE by Kenneth W. Simmons


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It is surprising that- in view of the many stories of internment in the hands of the Germans- and in view of the fact that Mr. Simmons is no more than a workaday writer- his prisoner of war record is as steadily interesting as it is. Much of it is due to the small details of everyday existence in Stalag Luft II where Simmons, an 8th Air Force flier, was a kriegie after he had been forced to bail out over Germany. The strict security system the prisoners set up, as well as the trading post with the goon guards, the private projects- from forging to tunnelling (and a unique dirt disposal device-- the latrines), the bridge games for a fifth of a cigarette a point, the diary Simmons kept- on toilet paper (only to lose it on the last lap home), a one man escape-all this is consistently intriguing and precedes the last weeks of actual physical suffering and stress on the ""death march"" into Germany when many died just before their liberation. At this point, ""God became known to every man"" and faith did most to sustain them- as it becomes here a prominent part in the final chapters of these experiences. Faith also, the author's ""sincere religious"" convictions, is the publisher's hope of reaching an audience at this late date.

Pub Date: Feb. 28th, 1960
Publisher: Nelson