Southern Patrol – 2013

 

SHARKHUNTERS International
Southern Patrol – 2013!

Join us in spirit for one of the best “Patrols” ever. You may either……….
Our invitation to participate in this great Ulrichsberg Memorial

Click on this photo above to begin the “Patrol” and follow along day by outstanding day or……..

Click on any of the photos below to visit a specific day in this “Patrol“.

 

SHARKHUNTERS International
Southern Patrol – 2013!

Our first day(s) were in München and Nürnberg. We always take it slowly the first day or so “on Patrol” to allow our travelers to recover from their jetlag and here is how it went.

We begin as always –in the Holiday Inn Express Airport
And…….as always, our first meal is dinner at the Italian restaurant Il Casale near the hotel. Their food is great and the pizza absolutely delicious.

The weather was great as you see, we are at the biergarten.

Tomorrow morning we depart for Nürnberg – and history!

Nürnberg, as you see in these photos,is a magnificent ancient medieval city
A great beginning in the old city and we will
be in this 13th century tower tomorrow.
A beautiful centuries old church .
These two churches shouldbe familiar to you……….if
Not only was LENI RIEFENSTAHL an incredible beauty and talented actress, she was a superb film director and made great films chronicling the history of the Third Reich from its infancy.…if you saw the fantastic movie “Triumph of the Will” made by LENI RIEFENSTAHL (3157-1993) and the same is true of this magnificent fountain.

These were all in the background as Adolf Hitler’s motorcade drove past.

This great film can be had from Sharkhunters. It is our DVD-14 and check our page of DVDs by clicking on the photo of this fountain.

What Does Tommy Say?

That was the constant question as we rolled along the Autobahn. TROY STROTHER (7255-2007) was really great and he brought along his Tom Tom GPS device that was programmed for Europe and we always made great time as Tommy re-routed us around slowdowns on the highway.

Many thanks TROY!

In the old section of Nürnberg we found this Aussie playing his digerey do while his wife sang (?????) but we wondered if he should have used a Tom Tom. As the welcome sign says in various Austrian airports – there are no kangaroos in Austria. Guess he got confused……

These people are always protesting something and we always see them in the Altstadt (the old city). This time
it was nuclear…….whatever.
HARRY COOPER (1-LIFE-1983) was looking at some literature and they tried to talk him into a donation. He explained that it probably wouldn’t work because when he was in the US Air Force, he was a nuclear weapons technician. They slammed the book shut on HARRY and walked away mumbling something under their breath. Probably “Yankee go home!
Just one of the beautiful Nürnberg marketsThe Nürnberg Rathaus (City Hall).
Interesting name, don’t you think?

Another big THANKS to TROY……….he recommended this mini-brewery for our dinner. The food was great and so was the beer.

 

 

SHARKHUNTERS International
Southern Patrol – 2013!

Our first day(s) were in München and Nürnberg. We always take it slowly the first day or so “on Patrol” to allow our travelers to recover from their jetlag and here is how it went.

We begin as always –in the Holiday Inn Express Airport
And…….as always, our first meal is dinner at the Italian restaurant Il Casale near the hotel. Their food is great and the pizza absolutely delicious.

The weather was great as you see, we are at the biergarten.

Tomorrow morning we depart for Nürnberg – and history!

Nürnberg, as you see in these photos,is a magnificent ancient medieval city
A great beginning in the old city and we will
be in this 13th century tower tomorrow.
A beautiful centuries old church .
These two churches shouldbe familiar to you……….if
Not only was LENI RIEFENSTAHL an incredible beauty and talented actress, she was a superb film director and made great films chronicling the history of the Third Reich from its infancy.…if you saw the fantastic movie “Triumph of the Will” made by LENI RIEFENSTAHL (3157-1993) and the same is true of this magnificent fountain.

These were all in the background as Adolf Hitler’s motorcade drove past.

This great film can be had from Sharkhunters. It is our DVD-14 and check our page of DVDs by clicking on the photo of this fountain.

What Does Tommy Say?

That was the constant question as we rolled along the Autobahn. TROY STROTHER (7255-2007) was really great and he brought along his Tom Tom GPS device that was programmed for Europe and we always made great time as Tommy re-routed us around slowdowns on the highway.

Many thanks TROY!

In the old section of Nürnberg we found this Aussie playing his digerey do while his wife sang (?????) but we wondered if he should have used a Tom Tom. As the welcome sign says in various Austrian airports – there are no kangaroos in Austria. Guess he got confused……

These people are always protesting something and we always see them in the Altstadt (the old city). This time
it was nuclear…….whatever.
HARRY COOPER (1-LIFE-1983) was looking at some literature and they tried to talk him into a donation. He explained that it probably wouldn’t work because when he was in the US Air Force, he was a nuclear weapons technician. They slammed the book shut on HARRY and walked away mumbling something under their breath. Probably “Yankee go home!
Just one of the beautiful Nürnberg marketsThe Nürnberg Rathaus (City Hall).
Interesting name, don’t you think?

Another big THANKS to TROY……….he recommended this mini-brewery for our dinner. The food was great and so was the beer.

 

SHARKHUNTERS International
Southern Patrol – 2013!

Jetlag is getting overcome and we go into high gear in Nürnberg as our good friend Oberstleutnant MICHAEL KAISER (6166-2000) takes us on a tour of his city – and into places absolutely not allowed for anyone else.

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MICHAEL (on the right) arrives to begin our tour.First stop is the former home of the newspaper “der Sturmer
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The scene depicted on the walls of the building is an oak tree symbolizing German strength while two little gnomes peek around the tree at the base. The German knight is about the sever the three heads of the Hydra which, we are told, represented the Jews of Germany.At the front of the building, we see the sign of the new Nürnberg newspaper covering the place where the huge eagle and Swastika once stood over the balcony.
streicher1Julius Streicher was an interesting man. He served in World War I in the Bavarian Army, reaching the rank of Leutnant and receiving the Iron Cross.

His newspaper was very anti-semitic and he was a high ranked Party member until he crossed too many of the hierarchy and they wanted him dead. He was still a friend of Hitler’s so he was just banished from the city.

When the war ended, he was sought as a war criminal but he fled into the Alps and made a living painting scenic works of the Alps……most of his buyers were American soldiers who did not know who he was. One day a Jeep pulled up to watch him paint and one of the Americans said that he bore a striking resemblance to Julius Streicher. Rather than laugh and claim that he hears that a lot, he began to sweat, get red in the face and made all sorts of denials. This made the men in the Jeep suspicious and they took him back to town where he was positively identified as Streicher. He was taken to the Nürnberg Tribunals, found guilty and hanged in 1946.

One might wonder why Streicher didn’t try to escape the area entirely rather than remain and hope to be able to look unimportant. Hiding in plain sight is a good plan – when it works. The risk is too great that if it does not work precisely as hoped for, there is no escape. Streicher is a great example of that old adage that “a hunter may make a thousand mistakes, but when the hunted makes but one mistake, the hunt is over“. Okay, on to more of Nürnberg.

13SoPat26We are on the march to other places of interest, but here Dr. CHARLES ELLIS (7324-C/LIFE-2008) on the left and U-Boat veteran HANS SPYKER (759-1988) on the right stop to chat with Willie Brandt, former Chancellor of Germany. Willie looks a little tired here so we only took a few photos then let him get back to sleep………and we walk onward.
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On our march, we pass the guest housefor important 3rd Reich visitors in Nürnberg
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Next is the palatial Grand Hotel where severalfamous movies were filmed.

Our next stop is a short view of the old city wall and one of the guarded gates. Citizens of ancient Nürnberg were serious about protecting their city from invasion as we see here.

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MICHAEL unlocks the door and we go insideMICHAEL holds the map of the ancient city wall
13SoPat42Photo left – the city looks like a doll house from up here.

Photo below left – this is not an ancient torture device; it is the ancient winch system used to haul cannons to the top level of this 13th century tower.

Photo below right – perhaps this is a modern torture device. Dr. CHARLES ELLIS (7324-C/LIFE-2008) occupies a rather unusual seat in the luggage compartment of one of the vans. Why? Don’t ask………

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Our next stop was at a very nice restaurant………..nice but unusual as the patrons in addition to the owners, were of the “peace and love” culture. The food was excellent, even though we were surrounded by pillows embroidered with “Love” and the peace symbol. As we see here, Dr. ELLIS and TROY STROTHER (7255-2007) were discussing possible payment of the bill.

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“What can we do with the bill?”“Give it to him!”

We have a short stop to look at the outside of the Palace of Justice where the Nürnberg Tribunals were held. Previously, we always visited inside Room 600, the room where the tribunals took place but no more. It has been turned into a museum of sorts and while we certainly do not object to paying the small fee to enter, we do not want to be subjected with another dose of that tired old propaganda about………….well, you can figure it out.

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These four large windows are at Room 600The jail was immediately behind the compound for better
security and ease of commuting for lawyers, judges etc.
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The main entranceThey took security seriously

We are on the march to visit a very unique museum…..housed in a tower bomb shelter. This tower was built during the war years to give air raid shelter to people in Nürnberg as the bombs were falling. It has very thick walls and bombs could not directly hit the greatly slanted roof.

A13SoPat58fter the war, the place was used to rehabilitate “ladies of the night” and so this tower was off limits to Allied personnel. That sign, although fading, is still clearly seen at the entrance. Let’s go inside.13SoPat59
The German eagle stands guard at the entrance.
These depict the bitter trench warfareof the First World War
Wouldn’t it just scare the hell out of an enemy soldier when he got a vision of this coming at him? Actually, this is RICH delFAVRO (1495-LIFE-1990) wearing a bullet proof vest of the time. It was probably effective, but it was really heavy.

Many thanks to RICH also, as he drove our luggage van on this trip. On returning to his home, he emailed this;
“Thanks for the good Patrol and
glad I could come along.”

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13SoPat69HANS SPYKER (759-1988) is reliving his youth in the museum, as he wore such a uniform when he was a sailor in the U-Bootwaffe. He doesn’t have much in the way of wartime memories, but he smiled when he told us of the train ride from training to his front base. Seems there was a group of young Blitzen Mädel (women radio operators) on the train and somehow they came into the compartment with HANS and his fellow U-Bootfahrer. We will leave the rest of this story to your imagination. HANS was lucky – the war ended before his new Type XXI boat went to sea, thus he lived through the war.

There is an incredible amount of fantastic militaria in this museum from all periods of warfare that affected Nürnberg. We donated a WW II US Navy jumper uniform as MICHAEL tells us that he needs more American items from the war.

The Golden Star
This day is drawing to a close (hard to believe all this was in just one day) and we have one more treat in store for us. We enjoy dinner this evening in a restaurant that was in operation and serving food some 70 years before Christopher Columbus set sail for the New World! They serve only one thing – the special Nürnberger sausages. They are about the size of your little finger, very tasty but also very rich and so one cannot eat too many of them. They are also served with delicious German potato salad. We have a standing offer to any Sharkhunters Members………..if they can top the record for number of sausages eaten in one sitting, Sharkhunters will pay for their dinner. Big STEVE RIHA (2936-1993) set the record for Sharkhunters some years ago at 42 sausages – then he added a huge ice cream sundae! Did anyone top Big STEVE‘s record on this trip? Let’s go along and see.

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Note that this restaurant began in the year 1419!It has looked like this for centuries
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The entry hall hasn’t changed much in centuries either.These little guys will fill you up and fast.
13SoPat93MICHAEL‘s lady joins us for dinner this evening.

No worries Big STEVE – nobody even tried to attack your record.

This has been an exciting and very eventful day and, thanks to our friend MICHAEL, we have seen a great deal…..but there is much, much more in store for us tomorrow. Get some sleep – tomorrow will be even more interesting; tomorrow is the day of “Eingang Verboten!” and it is going to be great.

 

SHARKHUNTERS International
Southern Patrol – 2013!

As we might expect, this will be a long and busy day; we took perhaps 200 photos this day along but will certainly not post that many. Join us as we first visit the massive underground air raid shelter bunker complex beneath the city. This is off limits to all………well, all except Sharkhunters. The underground complex was used to shield thousands of civilians from the bombing raids – some 6,000 in the smaller of the bunkers. After the war ended, the entire complex was converted into sort of an apartment complex with sections in which to live, with bathrooms, shower rooms etc and all for people to just merely survive after the war until suitable housing could be built. Last year was our final visit into this hidden place, off limits to most, because it was going to be filled in with sand. The idea apparently looked good………on paper, until engineers told the city officials that this plan was totally unworkable so rather than filling it in, they merely cut off electrical service and any other kind of service and left the place in the dark and abandoned – except for special visitors.

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Beneath the poster there is an inconspicuous keyhole
that opens the door to let us into the bomb shelters.
As we look back up these entry stairs we try to let our minds wander back 70 years and try to imagine thousands of terrified people trying to get down below as the bombers approached.
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If the lights went out, these phosphorescent
bands provided enough light by which to see.
Paperwork left behind……..
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Abandoned machineryis everywhere.
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Bands of phosphorescentare still everywhere.
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MICHAEL recreated the sound and impact of bombs falling above and to the thousands of frightened people packed inside, the experience must have been terrifying.

Our next stop was again EINGANG VERBOTEN which we know means Sharkhunters are welcome. Join us as we travel INSIDE the stadium at Zeppelnfeld and the fabled ‘Golden Room‘ where Adolf Hitler held receptions before going out his special door to speak to the crowd.

54x
From this (above) in 1936 to this (right) in 2013
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Thought we were kidding?U-Bootfahrer HANS SPYKER (759-1988)
stands on the podium of yesteryear
13SoPat124It is amazing that this magnificent room looks so good after seven decades, but it is fading and it will require €70,000,000 just to keep it in its present condition.

That is about $90,000,000 Yankee Dollars. Where will it come from?

Photo far right shows the intricate detail of the golden mosaic.

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…..wonder what is up here….OOPS! Where have they gone?
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They did not disappear into a time warp –they are in Hitler’s offices, now just storage rooms.
There are several of these massive bronze doors in the stadium, but the uppermost was used only by Adolf Hitler. No one else could go through those doors and now, no one at all can go through them as they are welded shut. Obviously, this is not Hitler’s door.13SoPat123

Not far from the Zeppelnfeld Party Rally grounds we find the massive Congreßhalle. Built in a similar fashion to the Coliseum in Rome, but the Coliseum could fit inside this building several times over! It is a huge structure and was meant to house Party and government officials.

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When finished, it should look like thisIt was never completed
Shameful!

When the war was about finished and the U.S. Army came to take over Nürnberg, they found that the Congreßhalle had been converted into a makeshift hospital for wounded soldiers. It was discovered that 17 of these soldiers, wounded in battle, were men of the Waffen SS – and the U.S. Army pulled them out of their beds, into this courtyard – and shot them dead.

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Now we go outside tothe finished facade of the building.
This was to be Adolf13SoPat141 Hitler’s personal entrance.

to the right – it is easy to see just how massive this structure is.

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Vehicles would come up this drive………...even trucks could drive around the building
We pass the headquarters & barracks of the 1st SS;the famed Leibstandarte Adolf Hitler
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1st%20SSxOnce home to one of the world’s best and most professional fighting forces; it is now the headquarters for immigration – helping asylum seekers.13SoPat145
We have driven to the other side of Zeppelnfeldwhere we find more sites of history
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The Luftwaffe Memorial was saved only because it had been placed here prior to World War II as a Memorial to the Luftwaffe men lost in the First World War. The World War
Two portions were added later or it would not be here today.
It is against the law in Germany to erect any memorials to the troops of World War Two.
The place where the “Death Ceremony” was held.

“Hitler’s Train Station”…………
We have done a lot, seen a lot this morning and have walked in the footsteps of history. Now it is time for lunch and we always eat in “Hitler’s Train Station” as it is called. This is the train station where Hitler stopped when appearing and speaking at Zeppelnfeld as it is right behind the huge stadium. The decor inside lets your mind wander back some 70 decades as we wait for our train. Join us for lunch – in history!

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Who walked through this door in 1936?Who sat at this bar back then?
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Who walked down this hall back thenand past these pictures?
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Whose suitcases are in the rack waiting for the next train?Shouldn’t yours be there too?
You may join us for our “SouthernPatrol” in September of 2014.

“It’s good to be the king”
That is a line from a famous movie and apparently it really was good back then. We toured the Castle of Nürnberg which as MICHAEL tells us, really is three castles together and only one of these castles was for the king. There was no furniture and no food there in the day, so when the king was going to be in the castle, the townspeople had to loan furniture to the castle for the king – not all were happy about this, but they had little choice. They also had to supply the food for the castle.

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Nürnberg castle is magnificent – Nürnberg itself is a beautiful city and filled with history. Many thanks to our good friend MICHAEL KAISER (6166-LIFE-2000) for everything he has done for us. His efforts are deeply appreciated!

This has been a busy and very eventful day, so we quickly return to the hotel for a good meal then to sleep.

 

SHARKHUNTERS International
Southern Patrol – 2013!

Where Eagles Dare!
That is a famous movie and we drove right past the castle that was used in the film. Ride along with us through the breathtakingly beautiful Bavarian and Austrian Alps as we drive south into Austria.

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We told you that the scenery was magnificent. It has been said, and accurately so, that you cannot get a bad beer or a bad meal here. It has also been said that you cannot take a bad photograph here either and that certainly is true.

You are not in these pictures – but you may join us in 2014 when Sharkhunters returns to this area; to this beautiful scenery and to the friendly people here – don’t forget the great food and beer.

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Our Home in Austria
After an easy four hour drive along the Autobahn through this fantastic scenery, we arrive at our home in Austria, the Hotel Gretl. At our first breakfast, we had to make the first award of the trip – a Verwundedabzeichen for RICH delFAVRO (1495-LIFE-1990). Those bread knives are really sharp…….

13SoPat177This is our home in Austria. It is family run by Michael and Martina, and they have made us part of their family. In this hotel they naturally have clean and comfortable rooms, they also have a sauna, a steam bath and………….very sharp bread knives.

Below left is our breakfast room and the breakfast is great. The soft boiled egg is popular in Europe as you see below.

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It is now time to board our cruise ship for a three hourtour of the picturesque lake Wörthersee.
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While waiting for the ship, we introduced HANS SPYKER (759-1988) to some of the WW II veterans we have known for years here in Austria. He soon had tears in his eyes.
Now it is time to sit back, order a beer or asnack and enjoy the view.
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HANS took this suggestion literally! Look at
his banana split in the shape of a boat!
Peacefully relaxing on the upper deck
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Heading back to the dock…………….…..and here we are.

Evening with the Veterans
This is the first of our fellowship evenings with the many veterans in attendance.

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13SoPat197LTo Help identify those at just this table:

A – ROSS KELBAUGH (7677-2013)
B –
C – Diane (SPYKER‘s daughter)
D – HANS SPYKER (759-1988) U-Boat veteran
E – ERNST PREUGEL (7683-2013) Aussie Coast Guard
F – PAUL RÖSCH (7019-LIFE-2005) 5th SS Viking Div.
Oberleutnant, Tank Commander. The ‘Energizer
Bunny
‘ is patterned after him!
G – JEFF CARSON (7228-2007) the Tunnel King
H – TONY BOWLEY (7726-2013) (not Martin Bormann)
J – TROY STROTHER (7255-2007)
K – Hazel Thorn
L – MANFRED THORN (7588-2011) 1st SS LAH

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We did not get photos of those at other tables for one reason or another. We were here with the veterans for many hours but it eventually was time for bed as tomorrow will be a very busy day too. Get some sleep and join us in history tomorrow.

 

SHARKHUNTERS International
Southern Patrol – 2013!

Afternoon and Evening With Veterans
We were specially invited to the HQ of the Marinekamaradschaft “Admiral Sterneck” for several hours hours on Saturday afternoon with the veterans. This is an overview of the warm fellowship between former enemies, now friends – some of our group were meeting new friends while others dashed about for autographs. Our hosts and the people there were great!

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We arrive for a great afternoon.

Let’s get the festivities started……..

Getting started – with beer of course. Left to right:
HARRY COOPER (1-LIFE-1983) USAF; USCG (Aux)
ERNST PRUEGL (7684-2013) Australian Coast Guard
PAUL RÖSCH (7019-2005) 5th SS
KARL-HEINZ FISTER (77229-2013) German MarineIn the background is Peter, a Doctor of Law
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XXXXX (76XX-2013) and Diane posing
with the picture of………well, you figure it out.
The old and the new generation of sailors
HANS SPYKER (759-1988) on the left
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The beer, the wurst, the fellowshipand the friendship was freely flowing
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ERNST PRUEGL and the President of the Ladies Auxiliarythe Future!
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KARL-HEINZ FISTER speaking;
ERNST PRUEGL translating – sort of.
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The presentation and the friendshipAll our attending Sharkhunters Members were presented with one of these pins – the original pins of the first Ulrichsberg Memorial. This was a wonderful thing our hosts have done.

Enjoy the rest of these photos of fellowship between former enemies, and the beauty of the HQ of the Kameradschaft.

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This has been a great afternoon and quite busy. Tomorrow will be even busier but we have a little free time this afternoon to tour the town and do some shopping then in the evening, another great gathering with the veterans.13SoPat204

Some of us have enjoyed shopping while others relaxed at sidewalk cafes savoring the wonderful ice cream treats served here. After a couple hours rest, we again join the veterans for another evening of fellowship.

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Awards and PresentationsBack with old friends
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FREE German military magazines – FREE!
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13SoPat234LWe had such a great time – we always do and it feels as if we are at home with family. ERNST, where are your eyes looking?

Now we head back to our hotel and some well deserved sleep. Tomorrow will be a very busy day.

 

 

SHARKHUNTERS International
Southern Patrol – 2013!

ULRICHSBERG Memorial!
This is where it all comes together – where the rubber meets the road. It is here that all who fell in battle as well as those missing in action, no matter what uniform they wore, are remembered for their sacrifice. Join us in this beautiful ceremony.

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Gathering with old friends as the day is beginning.
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Sharkhunters President HARRY COOPER (1-LIFE-1983) with Generalleutnant Erich Sporis von Ryznow, attachè for Sweden while in background we see TROY, XXX & ROSS.
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There will be no trouble with any Antifa idiotsThe beer tent is open early
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A film crew (Danish I think) is here to record it allThe film producer in charge of the documentary.
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The Standards are in place and weare almost ready to begin.
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Final checks and made, the film crew is in position – weare getting ready to begin.
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The Mayor of Redipuglia, Italy (at the right) looks over his notes. Redipuglia is the site of a massive and bitter battle in World War One in which young Oberleutnant Erwin Rommel earned his Blue Max medal. The trenches are still there.
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…..with an Italian admiral and an Italian dignitary…..with the same dignitary and also the wife of the Mayor
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PAUL RÖSCHE with the Mayor’s wife – as all
the guys look on from the back of the room.
COOPER and PREUGL with an Italian
dignitary and an Italian Admiral

After a while under the tent in the sun and wearing their winter blues (100% wool!) COOPER, FISTER and the others were beginning to really feel it. That is when Peter, the Doctor of Law seated next to COOPER, quietly asked if he would like “a few drops of Carinthian medicine” to which COOPER said that he would. At that point, Peter pulled out a hip flask filled with Medicine so COOPER took a swig and handed it to FISTER and so on down the line with all those wearing heavy uniforms. That made the afternoon go by a little quicker…

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The music begins…Chef of the UBG Hermann Kandusi makes opening remarks
13SoPat269We stopped filming when the event began, believing that it would be impolite to be snapping away as speakers were trying to present their speeches. And so we took some more photos upon the conclusion.
The priest gives the invocation
After the official event finished,we all gathered for lunch with the veterans
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The beer and brats were greatand so was the fellowship
13SoPat274Sharkhunters President HARRY COOPER (1-LIFE-1983) with our newest Member (at the time) TONY BOWLEY (7726-2013)…….not Martin Bormann.

We took a short rest in the afternoon, then back to dinner with more our friends and veterans, as it will be another year before we are together again. Why don’t YOU join us – make new friends and walk in the footsteps of history.

 

SHARKHUNTERS International
Southern Patrol – 2013!

Getting High in Austria!
On our next day, we did some sightseeing and this is the castle Hochhosterwicz, also known as the “Castle of 16 Gates” for the 16 fortified gates an enemy would have to fight through to reach the castle at the summit. No surprise – the castle was never taken in battle.

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Shrines like this are all over the country and well up into Germany. During the war we were told that Germans were a Godless bunch. Propaganda is a powerful weapon.Yep, we are going waaaaaaaay up there!
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That is a cable car with seven people in it.For the hardy hikers, this is the first of the fortified gates
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The courtyard below is already about 1,000 feet high
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Almost to the top and thefamily courtyard for the duke’s family
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Lunchtime, and we eat in the great hall where the knightsonce ate. Today it is schweinebraten and huge dumplings
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The duke prays for good luck when he goes to kill enemieswhile his lady waits patiently for his return
Most of the people depicted in the paintings in the knight’s hall only lived into their thirties. They had to pack a lot of living into a short time.

In the museum we see the armor of the castle’s men-at-arms and you will note that they are all about five feet tall – except for the massive huge guy at the right. He was the Captain of the Guard and he stood 2.25 meters tall! That is about seven feet and four inches! Maybe it was an accident or perhaps some of his men just didn’t like him because he was shot in the back with a crossbow by one of his own men. It could have been an accident – after all, sometimes an M-16 went off by accident in Vietnam and the platoon leader went down….

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Enter the Dragon
Okay, cheap takeoff on the Bruce Lee film of the 1960’s but we went to visit the dragon in the center of Klagenfurt, the county seat of the county of Kärnten (Carinthia) and he is right there in the town square. According to local legend, this dragon really was alive at one time and roamed all through Europe. Sadly, this dragon could eat only virgins and when he got here to Kärnten, the poor thing just starved to death.

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A sad fate to be sure.HANS SPYKER (759-1988) and his daughter Diane
13SoPat299In 1990 when Sharkhunters were first here, HARRY COOPER (1-LIFE-1983) was walking through this plaza with his best friend in Germany, Oberleutnant zur See der Reserve and Ritterkreuzträger HANS-GEORG HESS (125-1985), the plaza was filled with vendor stalls as ladies were selling all sorts of items. One older lady heard them talking and realized they were speaking English and asked HESS if we were Americans. He said that our group was mostly from the United States.

Tears were streaming down her cheeks, she yelled to some of the other ladies – they were holding COOPER‘s hand and thanking the USA for not allowing the victorious powers of the First World War to partition Kärnten off to be part of Croatia. It is still a powerful and moving memory for COOPER.

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Beautiful statues aboundWell, most of them are beautiful.

It was another busy day and we were glad to see our hotel rooms. Tomorrow we roll northward – come with us.

 

SHARKHUNTERS International
Southern Patrol – 2013!

Our New Home
With the sad and tragic passing of our dear friend INGRID SCHARFENBERG (3308-1993) in January 2013 after a fall in her Hotel zum Türken in December 2012, it was no longer an option. The “Queen of the Obersalzberg” had been replaced by the “Wicked Witch” from………….you fill in the blank. Geoff Walden came through for us and he recommended the Hotel Bavaria and we thank him deeply for this. This is our new home in Bavaria, family run by Wolfgang and Petra. Let’s look at this beautiful hotel.

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The Hotel Bavaria is a beautiful hoteland look at the view right out the front door.
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It has a sauna, steam bath and other health amenities.The rooms are all bright and they are spotless.
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View out the windows of the breakfast room is breathtaking.For the drinkers and socializers, a great bar.

It’s Good to be ‘Da King!
We have used this phrase before but it is true here as well. After we get squared away in our respective rooms, we head for Königsee – the King’s Lake for a boat ride. Come along with us.

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Monument to Crown Prince Lutpold.During the war, General Kesselring made his
headquarters here in the Hotel Schiffmeister.
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Our ship has come inand we go on board
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The boat stops far out in the lake; he plays a flugelhorn
and we hear the echo bounce back – three times.
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SHARKHUNTERS International
Southern Patrol – 2013!

Kehlsteinhaus – Eagle’s Nest
Today we are going high in the Bavarian Alps to the famed Kehlsteinhaus or as it is also known, the Eagle’s Nest but before we shove off, we need breakfast. Take a look at this beautiful layout for breakfast in the Hotel Bavaria.

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The breakfast room is cozy with a great view of the Alps.What kind of cereal do you want? It is here.
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As we drive out, take a look behind us. No, not at our hotel – it is really nice, but look at the tunnel and the rail line leading into it. You can’t see the tracks? You see only the road?

This hardened tunnel was built toward the end of the war when bombs were falling everywhere and a rail line ran right down what is now this road and Hermann Göring, Luftwaffe Chief, had his train filled with valuables hidden in this tunnel to avoid its destruction so he could escape with this fortune.

As we know, this did not work out for him. His treasure was seized, he was arrested, taken to Nürnberg for the show trials, condemned to death and was hanged. Okay, we know that he took poison and died in his cell, but the Tribunal said that he must hang so his dead body was taken to the gallows and a rope put around his neck where photos were taken.

The town of Berchtesgaden now uses the tunnel for storage.

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Off to the Kehlksteinhaus

This was the most unusual summer in this area in some twenty years. Maybe this “Global Warming” is not what we were told it would be. Normally, we are up here in short sleeve shirts but this day is quite different. Yep, “Global Warming“…..

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Over the tunnel entrance it tells that this was built in 1938.We walk the same corridor as they did in 1938!
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This is “Global Warming“?Somebody call Al Gore…………
Okay, it was unseasonably cold but the views were superb!
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Soon we are inside, past the beautiful fireplace made of red Italian marble, a present from Mussolini, and we enjoy another great meal high in the Alps. Great memories!13SoPat340
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the Berghof
Some wanted to see where Adolf Hitler’s Bavarian Alpine home had stood. The house itself was heavily damaged in a late April 1945 bombing raid, principally by the Royal Air Force. There was absolutely no strategic value to this target but it was bombed anyhow. The nearby homes of Hermann Göring and Martin Bormann were likewise badly damaged. They stood in ruins for decades until the U.S. Army turned the area over to the Bavarian Government who immediately torn down anything standing of these homes. Fortunately, we have video of all this before it was torn down including trips down into the various bunkers in the area – no longer accessible. That is our DVD-12 “Tunnels of the Third Reich and if you CLICK HERE, you will learn more about that DVD and the others in stock. Now let’s visit the Berghof.

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Only the retaining wall remains intact.Traces of a stairway…..were these the “Great Steps“?
13SoPat350This is the escape door for Adolf Hitler’s personal air raid shelter. Just inside this door are apartments for Hitler and for Eva Braun as well as a library and a storage room filled with phonograph records.
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Dr. ELLIS (7324-C/LIFE-2008) finds an air shaft.Stairs leading up from Hitler’s bunker.

It has been a busy two weeks, filled with history but now we have reached the saddest moment of any Sharkhunters “Patrol”; it is time for our “Farewell Dinner”; to say goodbye to friends new and old and to sort out all the great memories. But as both General MacArthur and Arnold Schwartzeneger have said………”We will be back!” Join us in 2014.

 

 

 

 

 

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Our beginnings………..

München und Nürnberg

Our first full day

We are in Nürnberg and with Willie Brandt

Click on this photo of CHARLIE, Willie
and HANS to continue

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13SoPat96Next day in Nürnberg – and what is that
we see hiding behind the torn paper of
the Elvis impersonator on a plain and
unnoticed little structure on a sidewalk?Eingang Verboten!

As we know, this means “Sharkhunters Welcome!” Click
on this photo at the left and see what is hidden here.
Where Eagles Dare!

We roll south through Bavaria into Austria.
The Alps are magnificent!

Click the photo of the castle and join us.

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13SoPat202Our next day saw us with the veterans at the Marinekameradschaft “Admiral Sterneck” in their HQ. What a wonderful time! We were treated like royalty.
No – better yet, we were treated like family! Was a wonderful time.Click the photo to the left and join us.
Ulrichsberg Memorial where all who fell in battle or were missing in action, no matter what uniform they wore, are remembered here for their service and sacrifice.

Click on the photo at the right and join us.

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13SoPat293This big guy who stood seven feet four inches,
is waiting for us at the Castle of 16 Gates.Click on the photo to “meet” him – and meet
the dragon that could only eat virgins.
Sharkhunters return to Bavaria; to the beautiful
town of Berchtesgaden and a new home.Click on the horn player to join us.
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13SoPat350The Eagle’s Nest and the Berghof – join us in history.

Click on this photo of the escape door from Adolf Hitler’s personal bunker and travel back in the tunnels of time.

Either way – it will be a great voyage in the tunnels of time and great history.

RICH delFAVRO (1495-LIFE-1990) was with again……for his fifth “Patrol” and he emailed this:
“I’m wishing I was still on patrol. The highlight was the Ulrichsberg weekend – not only the new location but also the brunch in Navy League Club. This made it new all over again. Again, the dinners with the veterans at the Rosenheim are always fun. I recognized many of the veterans but there were new faces as well. Although I’ve been ‘on board’ for five times now, I still saw so much for the first time. Our group was fun and I enjoyed getting to know everybody.”
RICH makes a great point here. All too often a Member will tell us that they would like to come on the Southern Patrol again but they have been one time and believe that they have seen it all. Not true! The “Patrol” changes every year – we do see some things again, but there are always new things, new places and new people. It is never the same so if you have been with us before, come again. It is new and different and exciting every time.