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15 October 2014
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The War in Germany - Chapter 6

by Genevieve

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Contributed by 
Genevieve
People in story: 
Dorothy
Location of story: 
Germany/UK/Shropshire
Article ID: 
A6884274
Contributed on: 
11 November 2005

This story was submitted to the People's War site by Genevieve Tudor of the BBC Radio Shropshire CSV Action Desk on behalf of Dorothy and has been added to the site with her permission. Dorothy fully understands the site's terms and conditions.

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"Did they go back to Germany after the war, to look, to meet?"

They did. The first time my mother went back was when I was nine. We were in Claremont Hill and I remember it well because I was left to look after my father and my brother. I had to do all the house-keeping for a week or a fortnight, or whatever it was. My mother went back to see her father who had survived the war and to see various other relatives.

My father didn't go back for many, many years and I think this was partly because of the long memories. There was fear of reprisals because, of course, they had left the country. Not only that, he'd actually joined the British Army. There were members of their own family that had been sucked into the Nazi regime, so there would be this ogre of a family-divide. My brother and I went back with them in our late-teens. We went on holiday to Germany to get introduced to the family over there.

They always loved camping and even in their early eighties they used to drive across Europe with their tent and they would camp in the various vicinities and visit the family and re-establish contact with the extended family, very much so in their last few years. But very few of the family ever came over here.

My grandfather on my mother's side came over when I was fifteen, only once, but he didn't survive much longer after that, but the extended family, as far as I know ... never. Whether this was to do with whatever little difficulties there were within the family, I don't know, but my parents always chose to go to them, rather than them come over here.

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Message 1 - The War in Germany - Chapter 6

Posted on: 11 November 2005 by Peter - WW2 Site Helper

Dear Genevieve

Please tell Dorothy that I found her story very moving. Despite all the long suffering and disruption, I am pleased that her parents found some happiness in Britain. One has only to read Victor Klemperer's diaries to learn what they went through.

Kind regards,
Peter Ghiringhelli

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