Flying and Fighting
"'What are you doing in my country?' asked Hanns Joachim Scharff, my interrogator. I'd been dragged into his office and he's wearing a beautiful German uniform. He's sitting in his office with books behind him, at his desk, and I'm shoved into a chair. He looks at me and says, 'What are you doing in my country?' I looked at him and I said, 'Burt Newmark, 716204, Second Lieutenant.' He said, 'Why are you telling me this, it doesn't mean anything to me.' So I pulled out my dog tags and I showed them to him and he said, 'If I show you my dog tags they say Colonel Bullshit.'
WWII Fighter Pilot and POW
Saturday October 3
"His job is to get information from me. He knows it and I know it but he's trying to tell me that name rank and serial number is insufficient to identify me as a soldier. He says, 'You've arrived in my country by parachute, you're not wearing a military uniform (I'm in my flight suit), you're a spy. I'm going to have you taken out and hung.' I said, 'You've seen my parachute and your people saw my airplane nose into the ground.' 'Oh, I see you're claiming to be a flyer,' he said
'Yes,' I said
'So that's why you're using the Geneva Convention. For you the war is over. For me the war is going to be over in three months.'
"This was February 22nd or 23rd. I'm not sure exactly because I was in pretty bad shape from being shot down. I was shot down near the town of Kriegsfeld on the 21st of February, 1945.
"So he said, 'Tell me the two letters on the side of your airplane, it will go easier for you and it will prove to me that you are a pilot.'
So I said, 'WZ'
'Oh,' he says, 'the 84th Fighter Squadron! How is Ray Smith?' Ray Smith was our operations officer and had crashed the week before and was in the hospital. What he was doing was letting me know that he knew more than I did. He knew the name of every pilot in my group and that Ray Smith had crashed.
Find out what happen and many other fascinating stories on Oct 3 at the Hiller Aviation Museum
For more information on Burt Newmark check out Evanís web site: evanflys.com