This book is dedicated to the servicemen of the US Army Air Force "who participated in the world's first combined, and most sustained strategic bombing campaign. These servicemen are widely acknowledged to have endured more hardships and made greater sacrifices than almost any group of combatants in modern warfare." The largest organizational entity to participate in this endeavor was the US Army Eighth Air Force, which lost 46,456 aircrew while conducting air operations over England and occupied Europe from 17 Aug 1942 through 25 Apr 1945.
For most veterans, the bomb run--the running a gauntlet of defensive fire, caused them their greatest fear in combat. "You couldn't do a darn thing about it," according to one airman, "[except] plow through it."
Don Dorfmeier, 1943
C-Lager was one of four separate compounds at Stalag Luft (Stammlager der Luftwaffe) IV–one of four primary internment camps established by the German Luftwaffe for captured Allied airmen during WWII. The camp, located near Gross Tychow in the northeast German province of Pomerania, opened 14 May 1944, with the arrival of 64 American POWs from the Dulag Luft at Wetzler. Over the next eight months, 10,000 American and British airmen were sent to Stalag Luft IV, which became the largest and most notorious of the four camps administered by Luftwaffe. In early February, 1945, the Soviet Winter Offensive into Eastern Europe forced the evacuation of this camp, resulting in an epic 86-day forced "Hunger March" across northern Germany.
Bomb run 398th Bomb Group
The book jacket was designed by the author and Dory Cary. My father's crew wings were photographed by Jerry Wallace.
The story, C-Lager: Stalag Luft IV & the 86-Day Hunger March, is an account of the service history of Sergeant Donald D. Dorfmeier and the air war in Europe during WWII, his subsequent capture, participation in the longest forced march of any group of Allied POWs in Germany during the winter of 1945, and later escape during the closing weeks of the war. For reviews and purchase information contact www.Amazon.com