George Copeland - POW tells his story
Memories live on through mementos
George CopelandWas a POW for nearly a year
- By Sarah Okeson
The first entry is Feb. 6, 1945. Copeland and an estimated 6,000 other prisoners from Stalag Luft IV near the Baltic Sea were marched out of camp as the Russians approached from the east. Hundreds died from exhaustion and disease in what some would later call the Black March. Others were shot when they couldn’t keep up.
Copeland, a farm boy from Kansas who had enlisted with dreams of being a pilot, each day recorded kilometers walked and food eaten, mostly potatoes and bread, or brot. According to his tally, they walked about 473 miles over 86 days.
The first entry is “27” with the words “1/9 can beef 1/3 brot.”
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