As an 18-year old Belgian, Herbert Maeger was blackmailed into volunteering for the Waffen-SS in 1941 in order to save his mother from being sent to a concentration camp.
After enduring harsh training with the Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler, considered by some to be a worse experience than serving at the fighting front, Maeger went on to be selected as a front line driver in Russia. He saw combat at Kharkov and at the legendary Battle of Kursk.
In 1944 he was transferred out for training as an SS paramedic, but after two months was sent, again against his will, for SS-officer training. Overheard making a defeatist remark, he was sent to the notorious SS penal division Dirlewanger on the Oder Front, with which he survived the horror of the Halbe pocket.
On 1 May 1945, Maeger was captured by the Russians near the Elbe. Held in a Russian prisoner of war camp, he served in its infirmary as a volunteer, which won him the admiration of the Russian female doctor. It was with her help that he gained his early release the same year.
This is an unrivaled account of one man's service in the elite Waffen-SS Leibstandarte division, principally on the Eastern Front.
- ISBN-13: 9781526768858
- ISBN-10: 1526768852
- Publisher: Frontline Books
- Publish Date: February 2020
- Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.1 x 0.9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
- Page Count: 272