Tuesday, 1 March 2011

"Jump into Hell"

I referred in my previous post to the Allied troops who were interred in KZ Buchenwald during the last months of WWII. Digging a little further, I found this video on Vimeo by Mike Dorsey, a filmmaker. He appears to be making (made?) a film about the experiences of the 168 Allied Airmen who ended up in Block 17, of whom two never returned. There's a few fascinating interviews on there, including one with the 'leader' of the group Lt. Col. Phil Lamason. He was the only one aware of the provisional date of their execution, October 26th 1944, and kept the information to himself in order to avoid spreading panic and in the hope that the Luftwaffe would help to free them. A week before the execution date, all but eleven men were transferred to Stalag Luft III, a POW camp. Lameson would not reveal how close they came to execution until almost forty years later.

A section of the documentary "Jump into Hell" can be viewed here. I almost wanted to say it was an inspiring story, but these men probably would not use that phrase, not least Lamason himself. They knew how lucky they were to be British, American and New Zealanders, and not Soviets. One of the men says in the film,

"...the thing that frightened us most was this tall chimney, with smoke belching out of it..."

1 comment:

  1. "Jump into Hell" is almost ready. First public viewing september 2011 in Florida, in presence of Lt Col. Rtd Elmer C. Freeman.