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"Fritz Bayerlein and the Nurse" Topic


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ScottWashburn Sponsoring Member of TMP09 Dec 2009 9:31 a.m. PST

I've now read two books, "A Time for Trumpets" and "Alamo in the Ardennes" which relate the rather amazing story of General Fritz Bayerlein and an American nurse. Supposedly, General Bayerlein, the commander of the Panzer Lehr division, spent the better part of a crucial day during the early stages of the Battle of the Bulge "dallying" with a beautiful American nurse that his men had captured. The source of the story is Bayerlein, himself, as told to his interrogators after the war. Now it seems very odd that Bayerlein would make up such a story since it hardly enhances his reputation as a general (although one never knows, Bayerlein did a lot of work as a technical advisor in Hollywood after the war, perhaps he was a frustrated show man). But if the story is true, who was this woman? I've read that some American nurses were captured when the Germans overran some field hospitals. But the number has to be few. It should be possible to identify who she was. Why hasn't she ever come forward? What happened to her after her day with Bayerlein? It seems like a remarkable story. Anyone here know anything about the beautiful blonde who helped save Bastogne?

Personal logo John the OFM Supporting Member of TMP In the TMP Dawghouse09 Dec 2009 9:36 a.m. PST

He may have just been killing time, waiting for his men to find a bridge that the Engineers had not yet blown up.
What better way to pass the time?

bobstro09 Dec 2009 9:48 a.m. PST

I can only think that being dallied with whilst a prisoner of war perhaps wasn't as much fun for the nurse. I don't often see having been over-run by the enemy described as much of a turn on from the woman's perspective.

- Bob

Personal logo Dan Cyr Supporting Member of TMP09 Dec 2009 12:11 p.m. PST

Worked against Lord Howe during the NY campaign (smile).

An old American ploy, hey?

Dan

Personal logo Mserafin Supporting Member of TMP09 Dec 2009 12:13 p.m. PST

It also worked against the entire staff of the Army of Tennessee at Spring Hill, as well.

Cherchez le femme, indeed!

dmclellan09 Dec 2009 12:21 p.m. PST

Earl Van Dorn had a little problem with this issue as well.

JackWhite09 Dec 2009 12:21 p.m. PST

MOM!


GOTCHA!

JW

Baggy Sausage09 Dec 2009 12:29 p.m. PST

I think it was Hot Lips mom.

Tankrider09 Dec 2009 3:30 p.m. PST

To the winner.. goes the spoils.

Well at least he was winning at THAT point.

rddfxx09 Dec 2009 5:45 p.m. PST

Er, Hot Lips was a major by 1951-2, so no doubt it was her and not mom.

archstanton7309 Dec 2009 6:33 p.m. PST

Are you sure it wasn't a male nurse?????

Jamesonsafari09 Dec 2009 7:38 p.m. PST

Not really something to be talking about when you get home in '45 or '46. Either you were raped or you were enjoying it. Folks wouldn't be terribly understanding even if you did help distract a key German commander.

Personal logo John the OFM Supporting Member of TMP In the TMP Dawghouse09 Dec 2009 8:31 p.m. PST

He probably thought he was being galant.
She was probably scared out of her wits.

aercdr09 Dec 2009 9:23 p.m. PST

and let us not forget Santa Anna at San Jacinto (allegedly dallying away the time with a senorita when the Texans attacked).

DJButtonup10 Dec 2009 8:48 a.m. PST

We're too quick to besmirch the nurse's honor!
A dalliance does not imply engaging in the natural, zesty enterprise.

bobstro10 Dec 2009 9:22 a.m. PST

I think we're crediting Bayerlein with too much honor, frankly. He probably joked about how his boys were playing a friendly game of soccer with the PoWs at Malmedy too.

Personal logo Mserafin Supporting Member of TMP10 Dec 2009 10:47 a.m. PST

It wasn't Bayerlein's men (Panzer Lehr) at Malmedy, it was Peiper's (1st SS Panzer).

ScottWashburn Sponsoring Member of TMP10 Dec 2009 10:47 a.m. PST

Actually Bayerlein does have the reputation for having been a pretty decent guy (his troops were nowhere near Malmedy, that was Pieper's boys).

I have managed to find a little on-line info on the nurse. One writer claims that she was with the 42nd Field Hospital and that her last name might have been Asselin.

bobstro10 Dec 2009 10:50 a.m. PST

My point wasn't that he was responsible for Malmedy, but that his perspective was probably not the same as the nurse's regarding the events of those dates. I suspect most women serving in the military don't find capture by the enemy an arousing experience. I find her reluctance to come forward unsurprising.

- Bob

tuscaloosa10 Dec 2009 12:51 p.m. PST

Amen. Not exactly the kind of thing to share with the boys (girls) sitting around the VFW of an evening.

Personal logo Dan Cyr Supporting Member of TMP10 Dec 2009 2:03 p.m. PST

Ask the nurses captured at Hong Kong or Manila.

Dan

ScottWashburn Sponsoring Member of TMP11 Dec 2009 5:08 a.m. PST

We seem to be slipping away from the point of my original post. I'm not trying to find out lurid details of this woman's (no doubt terrifying) experience, I'm trying to find out if she even existed. Or if the whole incident was just fabricated by General Bayerlein.

bobstro11 Dec 2009 6:34 a.m. PST

Whether or not he spent the day accosting a prisoner? I see no reason it wouldn't have happened. He had the power of life or death over her. It does seem odd he'd brag about it.

- Bob

badger2211 Dec 2009 9:24 a.m. PST

Maybe he was just drunk, but thiought that would get him in big trouble, but hanging out with a captured american Nurse would be acceptible in Nazi circles.

Or even just fell asleep, he was old enough to do just that, but that does not cutr a very dashing figure.

Ross Mcpharter12 Dec 2009 1:18 p.m. PST

I'm pretty sure somebody nailed this a couple of years ago,and that it in fact happened. It was either somebody from the paper wargames side like Danny Parker (highly likely as he is probably the leading authority on the bulge) or Joe Youst but my memory fails me here. Further it was discussed heavily on one of the WW2 discussion boards where pictures were shown of the American Nurse and her life post war was given as well. It may have been the Axis History Forum.

It has also been claimed that Bayerlein also dallied earlier with a Belgian lady as well, but whether this is an error or a mistake for the American nurse I don't know. Manteuffel blamed Bayerlains delays for the failure of the Germans to take Bastogne before 101st AB turned up

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