RK 1945-1947 After the war

From Stalag Luft Richard was marched to Berlin. The next thing they know there was an aircraft arriving to take them home. This is all Richard said.

Here’s the account from Wiki: Just before midnight on 27 January 1945, with Soviet troops only 26 km away, the remaining 11,000 POWs were marched out of camp with the eventual destination of Spremberg. In freezing temperatures and 15 cm (6 in) of snow, 2,000 prisoners were assigned to clear the road ahead of the main group. After a 55 km (34 mi) march, the POWs arrived in Bad Muskau where they rested for thirty hours, before marching the remaining 26 km (16 mi) to Spremberg. On 31 January, the South Compound prisoners plus 200 men from the West Compound were sent by train to Stalag VII-A at Moosburg followed by the Centre compound prisoners on 7 February. 32 prisoners escaped during the march to Moosburg but all were recaptured.[49] The North, East and remaining West compound prisoners at Spremberg were sent to Stalag XIII-D at Nürnberg on 2 February.

With the approach of US forces on 13 April, the American prisoners at XIII-D were marched to Stalag VII-A. While the majority reached VII-A on 20 April, many had dropped out on the way with the German guards making no attempt to stop them. Built to hold 14,000 POWs, Stalag VII-A now held 130,000 from evacuated stalags with 500 living in barracks built for 200. Some chose to live in tents while others slept in air raid slit trenches.[50] The U.S. 14th Armored Division liberated the prisoners of VII-A on 29 April.[4] Kenneth W. Simmons’ book Kriegie (1960) vividly describes the life of POWs in the American section of Stalag Luft III in the final months of the war, ending with the winter force-march from the camp, ahead of the advancing Soviet troops and eventually being liberated.

Prepared for TIGER FORCE

Although the war in Europe was ended the war continued in the Far East and RK joined Tiger Force to develop Far East Project. Hugh Lloyd, was Chief Intelligence Officer. RK was on his way to Liverpool to catch the boat to the Far East, when the bomb was dropped on Hiroshima. Tiger Force was disbanded.

1946 EGYPT

Posted to Egypt Heliopolis outside Cairo. Richard in charge of Transport Wing, then part of training, where he trained dogs as well as people.

Imperial Defense College

Over a few drinks with the CinC, he suggested to RK ‘What about the Imperial Defense College?’ RK explained that he couldn’t as he hadn’t been to Staff College – the war interrupting as it were. That was enough for the CinC who put forward RK’s name and he was accepted immediately. This was a great privilege for RK being the top staff college.

1947 MEDICAL discharge

In the UK attending a meeting at the Air Ministry, he was called out for a regular medical – he had not had one for 10 years. Doctor diagnosed arthritis on his spine. No more flying. RK was to be invalided out on full pension.

Nevertheless Richard returned to the Middle East to look after this growing transport of dogs and horses and the CinC on hearing this news was furious and said he could easily over turn his decision. RK said no, stick to the plan. He was officially invalided out on April 17th 1947.



RK 1947-59 South Africa / Rhodesia