[Ger-Poland-Volhynia] Gustav Friedrich Sturm

SANDIE WILLIAMS sandie.williams2williams at btinternet.com
Mon Mar 14 08:28:28 PDT 2011

Can anybody help me please? My grandfather was a German POW in England before staying here after the war. He would not speak about his time in the camp, or about his life in Germany or during the war. It is only since his death have we found out more information about where he came from and his family, and we are now trying to put together the pieces of the puzzle. None of us speak German either, as he would not speak it at all. The information we do have is as follows, and if anyone knows anything about any of it, or members of the family, or about where he came from, we would be incredibly grateful!! Here goes: 

Name; Gustav (Robert) Friedrich Sturm
Born: 13 August 1915, Jankenwalde, Nr Rastenburg, East Prussia
Died: 1 January 1994, Marlborough, Wiltshire. 
Married: i) Katharina Truschell (b: 28 March 1918) married 23.12.1939 (divorced?)
Married: ii) Dorothy Grace Maclean married 26 October 1948
Mother: Whilhelmine Brandt, born 16 July 1891, Married 15 Feb 1915 
Father: Gustav Robert Sturm. (D.o.b. unknown as yet). 

On 3rd Sept 1939 he joined the Stab II Infantry Regiment but was not called up until 7 June 1943. At the time he signed up, his hometown was listed as Powunden, nr Konigsberg. His parents were farmers, and it is thought he was a farmer and that is why he was not called up initially. After the war he ran a farm in Berkshire too, so it is definately his vocation. 

We know something of his war career: On 10th July 1943 he joined the frontline Grenadier Regiment 348, 5 days into the Battle of Kursk. He was severely injured from an exploding artillery shell in his leg, and he was in hospital for 3 months. he rejoined active service on 1st May 1944 and was sent to the Franco-Spanish border. He then had to travel 700 miles to the beaches at Normandy  to fight the allies. In August 1944 he was caught in the 'Falaise Pocket' ... out of c.15,000 German soldiers, he was one of only 500 to survive. We think he was taken prisoner by the British army in the Netherlands, and brought over to England before being interred in a POW camp. 

We know virtually nothing about his family. His mother, Whilhelmine Brandt, had a brother Gustav who was born 27 July 1894, died 3 Nov. 1977 and married Anna Maria Seraphin on 10th Sept 1921. They had a daughter Frida (Gustav's cousin) B; 7 Feb 1922, D: 24 Feb 2006, married Joachim Fuhrich (Furich) on 11 Sept. 1954. They had no children. 

Phew!! I hope you can help? Any snippets of information would be a great help. I know that the major towns he lived close to are now Kaliningrad (Konigsberg) and Ketrzyn (Rastenburg), and that apparently Powunden is now the site of Khrabrovo Airport, and are therefore in Polish and Russian hands respectively. if anyone knows anything about where he was born and lived before the war it would be great. 

Thank you in anticipation!!
Sandie Williams


More information about the Ger-Poland-Volhynia mailing list