Dallas Paratrooper Finds Life With
Nazis Tough Proposition
liked my B rations, too."
Daniels told of being taken to a German field hospital where he lay
on a pile of straw used for beds.
“After three days they stopped
the straw and the stuff began to stink.' he said.
“We were cared for by a Captain Adams, a captured paratroop medical
officer. He was probably the first prisoner taken by the Germans
in the invasion of Normandy.
“He had jumped about the same time I did but landed right on the roof
of a German headquarters. He slipped off the roof into the back
of a truck where some Germans were sleeping and was captured." The
prisoner-patients were soon transferred; to Cherbourg where they
got better treatment and casts on their broken bones, Sergeant Daniels
French Help Pro Ally
“For the .next ten days we waited. The French help in the hospital
was very pro-ally. A cute, French girl brought me
some cigarettes but a German guard caught her and slapped her face.
“The Poles and the Russians among the German army personnel really
looked forward to the coming of the Yanks. They slipped us cog-
nac and cigarettes.
“Three days before the Americans took Cherbourg, the Germans moved
all the litter patients into an air-raid shelter. The next day one
of our wounded flight officers and a German medical officer went
across the lines under a white flag to get some badly needed medical
supplies, and to advise the Americans- where our hospital was so
wouldn't bomb or shell
“On the morning of the 26th we heard the sweetest music in the world,
American Browning automatic rifles and machine-gun
The whole hospital
staff surrendered to our troops, when they come through.
“Major General Eddie, commander of the Ninth Division, and Major General
Collin, who were right up there' with the front line troops, came
in and talked to all of us. Medics brought some C rations. A sizzling
steak couldn’t have tasted any better.
“When we first heard the news that the hospital was under Yank control,
the men who could walk hobbled around the wards and tore down the
large pictures of Hitler, Goebbels and Goering that were hung all
over the place."
TEMPLE, Texas, Aug. 1 (AP).—
Texas sergeant of the
82d AirBorne Division who spent three weeks as a German prisoner
at Cherbourg before being liberated by the American capture of the
port, is back at McCloskey General Hospital with a vivid story of
life with the Nazis.
He is Sgt. Robert S. Daniels, whose wife lives at 2611 Douglas Avenue,
Daniels told how antiaircraft fire hit the plane carrying him to Normandy,
how tracers from machine guns followed the plane over France, about
how he wondered if the tracers going through his parachute as he
sailed to earth would set the ’chute afire.
“I crashed through a tree before I hit the ground and broke my leg.
Four of my men joined me,” Daniels said. “For fourteen hours, five
of us held a terrace in an orchard against a bunch of Germans.
Men Refuse to Leave.
“Finally the Germans
brought up a
machine gun. They
killed two of the boys and wounded another. Since the
situation was hopeless, I ordered
the two men alive to leave. They refused. But I finally convinced
them it was foolish to stay.
“When they left I had ammunition for my pistol and a few grenades.
After I used that up, I lay back and waited for them to come and
get me. I was carried to a German command post and dropped on the
“A German officer who strutted over asked me what time I had jumped.
I told him to go to hell. He slapped my face. After a bit, he left
me and went over to question Lt. Dixie Davis of San Antonio, an
officer from my outfit who had been wounded before he was captured.
The German got nothing out of Lieutenant Davis.
“When he came back to me, he told me that he knew I was in the 82d
AirzBorne Division and that I might as well tell him what he wanted
to know since they had gotten plenty of information from the other
prisoners. I guess he could see I knew was lying because he moved
“They searched me and took everything. . . . They
(article courtesy of Bob Chisolm)