Old Bedford – The Axis Perspective

March 3, 2010 - 1 Comment

by Jim Barnes

Here is a report on the OBV tactical from the German perspective by Bill Donegan:

Report of Elbe Tactical.

It was cold enough to freeze the _____off a brass monkey at Old Bedford last week-end Feb 20, 21, 22,  2010.

Thanks goes out to Gilbert White, Roger Bombard, Ray Partenheimer, the Second Gebirgs and Et al for a fantastic tactical at Old Bedford Village, Pa on Feb 20-22, 2010.

On Friday Feb. 19, 2010 I drove from Charleston WV to Morgantown WV to pick up Jim Barnes to travel together with him to Old Bedford, PA.  Our first stop on the long trip was the Wendy’s in Morgantown for lunch.  As we are wont to do, Jim and I were already dressed in our uniforms.  I in my German gebirgsjager obergefreiter  winter anzug, and Jim in Russian uniform , resplendent with medals.

We were surprised when someone spoke to Jim in Russian.  One of the girls at the restaurant asked if we were in the Army.  I replied that we were happy to see an interest in our serving the military.

We had the most scenic drive through WV, Maryland and PA on the way to Bedford, as this was the first day in over a week that it had not snowed and the forest was covered in ice and snow.

We arrived in Bedford, checked in with Roger and Ray, and promptly began shopping.  Then we got our cabin assignments.  Jim was billeted in cabin #11 and I was put upstairs at the tavern.  We set up our cots, and bedding and returned to the welcome center for more  shopping, visiting and eating.

Jim introduced me to a Russian lady, Irena and her husband, David, who had made enough Borscht to feed an army, which we ate our fill of.

Below is a photograph of me taken by Jim.  I am breaking in my new jodphurs (summer weight).  Note the three feet of snow surrounding me.  The temperature was 20 degrees.

I was surprised to meet a Russian reenactor  from Williamsburg, VA to whom I am related.  Here is a photo of me with Cindy.

Jim and I took so few pictures on this trip because we were so busy and my wife, Linda, who usually takes a lot of them was at home this time.

This is at the tavern with gebirgsjagers warming their feet by the fire.

Here is Jim Barnes, left with a Russian Kamerad at the tavern Friday night at the German party.

This picture shows two gebirgjagers taking cover among trees by the river awaiting the arrival of American troops.  Somewhere near Torgau.

This photo shows German troops just before the American attack.  Note the orange smoke from a grenade and the swastika flag in the background.

The tactical began at 1000 and ended around 1400.  The Americans attacked first then the Russians.

The snow was so deep that we could hardly walk let alone run.  I was too slow and was shot at least 20 times.  I will start wearing the gold wound badge.

Gilbert White did a great job of telling us when we had been shot, as we seldom knew from whence the shot came.  Joe Ramminger was our leader , who was always urging the Germans forward,  inspite of heavy casualties.  The Americans had more machine guns and vehicles than the Germans and they  kept driving past us and strafing us from the road with machine fire.

Jim and I had a great time but were so tired and cold that we hardly slept all week-end.

The host unit was the 2nd Gebirgs who fed us on Saturday night and also hosted nightly parties in the tavern.

I give this event five stars.

Bill Donegan

Comments (1)

Mark Laratonda

August 11th, 2010 at 8:21 pm    


Very nice article and I fully agree with your comments. I was so tired from running in that snow that it took me 2 days to recover from feeling so tired! I had a blast and hopefully next year the Germans will win!


Hoch 4

Leave a reply

Name *

Mail *