In March 2006, historian / author Anna Elisabeth Rosmus from Passau, Germany, / USA organized a European Reminiscence Tour with former soldiers of the 65th and 71st U.S. Infantry Divisions, who terminated WW II – in Bavaria as well as in Augsburg (71st).
Augsburg, March 29th:
After a honorable reception in the Prince’s Room of Augsburg’s Town Hall, the Jewish Synagoge in Halder Street and, on the other side of the street, the House of the Bavarian History were visited. Then the veterans made a bus tour to have a look at the former kaserne and housing areas. A common dinner in the restaurant of the “abraxas”, now a Cultural Center of the City of Augsburg, during the U.S. days an Army Recreation Center (Bldg 33) at the former Reese Barracks, brought an end to an exacting day.
It was a great honor for the society Amerika in Augsburg e.V., to show the nine aged veterans of the “last as well as the first hour” a welcome gesture of understanding between the nations. Among the former soldiers, several even wearing their original uniforms, was “Mickey” Mason Hardin Dorssey, who served as 71st Infantry Division’s supply manager in Flak Kaserne and who was a very good friend of a family in Waldberg near Augsburg.
The distress of the German civilians and the can-do attitude of the American GIs led to a number of personal connections with deeply felt commemorations. Hence, “Mickey” now met the brother of the girl that he had especially cherished during his Augsburg days. Even years after his return to the U.S.A., Dorsey sent parcels with “Nylons”, cigarettes and other goodies across the Pond to Waldberg. To the society Amerika in Augsburg e.V., he handed over photographs of the former Flak Kaserne, where he, as a sporting archer, probably also loved to hit female hearts.
1st row from left: Earl Layton Flanagan, Mason Hardin Dorsey, Stephen Don. Mahoney, Robert Fitzgerald Patton, Lewis K. Kest, Anna Elisabeth Rosmus.
Stefan Geiger and Mason H. Dorsey with Mrs. Ursel Heinze, formerly Public Affairs Office, USMCA Augsburg.
Heinz Strüber (left) talking with Maynard B. Hanson, 65th Infantry Div, refreshments in the City Hall’s Prince’s Room.