Czechoslovak Prisoners of War



Stalag Luft I, Barth, February 1942, Urba Petr, Novotný Emanuel, Kopal Gustav, Knotek František, Šesták Augustin.

For members of the Czechoslovak Armed Forces during WW2 the possibility of German captivity represented an extreme personal risk. Czechoslovakia had been broken up before the war started and, from the viewpoint of the legislation of Nazi Germany, it did not present an entity under international law. The Nazi authorities ignored the fact that the Czechoslovak Government in Exile was gradually being recognised by a number of countries in the anti-Hitler coalition, as well as the fact that it had formally declared war on Germany. The Nazi judiciary thus qualified the raising of arms against the ‘mother empire’ as high treason (pertaining to paragraph 91 of the Reich Criminal Code).

A specific group of Czechoslovak soldiers in German captivity consists of Czechoslovak airmen, members of the Royal Air Force, who endured captivity in British, rather than Czechoslovak, uniform, which gave them fairly effective protection from Nazi reprisals. During the course of the war a total of 52 of them were captured by the Germans. After they were brought down by hostile fire over enemy territory, they were sent to the Dulag Luft transit camp in Oberursel near Frankfurt am Main, as was the case with other allied airmen. Here they underwent routine intelligence interrogations (during which their nationality was usually uncovered by their RAF service numbers), after which they were sent directly to one the prisioner-of-war camps (with the exception of the first Czechoslovak crew to have been been brought down). Initially as a rule they were sent to Stalag Luft I camp in the north German town of Barth on the Baltic coast, the first camp specifically designated for airmen, and to a lesser extent also to Stalag VIIIb camp in the Silesian town of Lamsdorf (today Lambinowice in Poland) or the Stalag IXc camp in the Thuringian town of Bad Sulza, while some officers were sent to the Oflag XXIb camp in Schubin (today Szubin in Poland). Starting in April 1942, the vast majority of Czechoslovak captives were progressively concentrated in the newly opened Stalag Luft III prisoner-of-war camp for airmen in Sagan (now Źiagań, in Poland). In October 1942 they were split into two because the decision had been taken to make Sagan a camp exclusively for officers. All 23 Czechoslovak non-commissioned officers (NCO’s) were thus transported to the Stalag Luft I camp in Barth. In November 1943, the majority of them were transferred from Barth to the Stalag IVb camp in Mühlberg. Only eleven NCO’s thus remained in Barth. Only Czechoslovak officers continued to remain in Sagan, later they were joined by a few others. The majority of Czechoslovak airmen brought down in 1944 were then placed in the Stalag Luft VII camp in Bankau (now Baków, Poland).

Stalag Luft III, Sagan.

Stalag Luft I, Barth.

The Nazi judiciary attempted to apply the infamous paragraph 91 of the Reich Criminal Code already against the first Czechoslovak airmen captured in September 1940. After an interrogation in the Dulag Luft camp in Oberursel they were not released to join the other inmates, but instead a warrant was issued for their arrest and on 28th September 1940, they were initisally placed in custody in the Berlin-Alt Moabit civilian prison and then in the Berlin Tegel remand prison. However the trial by the Reichskriegsgericht (Reich War Court), which was originally set for 18th February 1941, was suddenly adjourned. In fact, the British Government had intervened via the institute of Protecting Power, threatening to take severe retaliatory measures, and this led to the temporary termination of the prosecution. After they were released from Tegel prison (on 18th September 1941), the airmen were sent to prisoner-of-war camps and later they all met up in the Stalag Luft III camp in Sagan.

František Burda

Thereafter the Germans treated captive Czechoslovak airmen in more or less the same manner as other members of the RAF. This was largely due to the Senior British Officers (SBO’s), who made determined representations both at the level of German camp commanders, and with representatives of Protection Power, asserting that Czechoslovak airmen were British prisoners-of-war and that they must be treated in the same way as Britons. In particular, this was the case with W/Cdr Harry M.A. ‘Wings’ Day (SBO in Dulag Luft later in Stalag Luft III camp), G/Cpt D.E.L. Wilson (Stalag Luft III). Among other supporters of Czechoslovak airmen, the following should be mentioned: Brig. Gen. Somerset, S/Ldr J. Smith (both in Oflag IXA/H camp), W/Cdr T.D. Ferres (Stalag Luft III), W/O J.A.G. ‘Dixie’ Deans (Stalag Luft III), W/O T.K. May (Stalag Luft I), Lt. Alan B. Campbell (Oflag IVc) and others.

Alois Šiška, prisoner 39654

However, in the summer of 1944, the issue of prisoners-of-war to a large extent also became a matter for the ‘department’ of the Nazi security apparatus and it was at this time that the Nazi judiciary made a final attempt to reckon with ‘the Czech perpetrators of high treason’. Despite the fact that the Geneva Convention expressly forbid such measures, a total of 24 Czechoslovak airmen were arrested between 23rd July and 25th August 1944, in the camps Stalag Luft I (Barth), Stalag Luft III (Sagan) and Oflag IVc (Colditz) and they were dragged off to the Gestapo Headquarters in the Protektorat Böhmen und Mähren in Prague. Although this concerned all the Czechoslovak airmen held in the Barth, Sagan and Colditz camps, at the same time they accounted for only half the Czechoslovak RAF members held in captivity. The remainder remained scattered in other camps and their turn never came. Why this was remains unanswered. It cannot be excluded, however, that German war bureaucracy had in the meantime lost information about them.

While being interrogated by the Gestapo, the arrested airmen were held in the Gestapo prison of Pankrác, Prague, later however, they were sent to the military prison at Hradčany, in Prague, which indicated that the entire matter was to be handed over to the jurisdiction of the Wehrmacht. Designated for death by capital punishment, they were then transported from Prague to the prisoner-of-war camps Stalag Luft I (Barth) and Oflag IVc (Colditz), from where they were to be sent to the Reich War Court, whose verdict, given the circumstancesm was known beforehand. Reports about the trial under preparation reached Britain via Protection Power (Switzerland) in October 1944, The arrested airmen, having found themselves in a no-win situation, claimed that ‘they had taken an oath of allegiance to the King and were British Subjects.” Strictly speaking, from the viewpoint of international law, it was a disputable claim. On the basis of a legal analysis by the Home Office, the Foreign Office announced to the Czechoslovak Government on 16th December 1944 that in joining the RAF, “these Czechoslovak prisoners could not have obtained British nationality.” Of course this was only confidential information and in this matter the British “showed the lengths to which they were prepared to go if they would have any effect on the Germans.” In other words – they were willing to make a deliberate statement to the effect that consider Czechoslovak airmen captured in British uniform to be British subjects. In relation to this, the Foreign Office sent a dispatch on 5th February 1945 to the British Ambassador in Bern “drawing his attention to HM Government’s serious concerns at the danger to which these Czechoslovak prisoners were exposed and pointing out that we did not admit that they were German subjects or liable to accusation of treason. Having sworn allegiance to H.M. King, and having served in the British Forces in British uniform, they should be treated under the terms of the Geneva Convention in exactly the same way as British prisoners-of-war,” and requested him to pass this viewpoint. At this occasion the British Ambassador was given an order to ask the Swiss Government “to make immediate communication to the German Authorities on the above lines…and to add that H.M. Government would regard any prosecution for treason as illegal, and that the persons responsible would have to answer for their activity after the war.”

The British protest did not remain fruitless, though there’s no doubt that the approaching end of the war, of which the winner was now certain, was a primary contributing factor. It is likely that the German Army justice officials concerned did not wish to compromise themselves before the future victors of the war. Reich Military Attorney terminated the criminal proceedings with the proviso that “the hearing should only take place after the war”. At the time, however, it must have already been obvious that such a trial was purely hypothetical. As early as 1943 the Allies had declared that they would only accept unconditional surrender by Germany and under such a situation there was certainly no prospect for a purely hypothetical trials with ‘Czech traitors’ after the end of the war. The decision of the OKW can thus on the one hand be understood as an effort to keep face before the Allies and on the other as passing the buck so as not to aggravate the Nazi security sections.

Václav Kilian

The majority of captive Czechoslovak airmen were released from prisoner-of-war camps Oflag IVc in Colditz (16th April 1945) and Stalag Luft I in Barth (1st May 1945) by the advancing allied armies, the remainder at about the same time, mostly after long and exhausting evacuation marches in advance of the approaching eastern and western fronts. After this they were repatriated by air to Britain where they recovered from the hardships and experiences of German captivity.

The only exception was F/Lt Arnošt Valenta, formerly a wireless operator of the No 311 Czech Bomber Squadron, who had been captured on the night of the 6th February 1941. He was one of the main protagonists in the legendary Great Escape from the prisoner-of-war camp Stalag Luft III in Sagan on the night of 24th and 25th March 1944, when 76 Allied air officers (including 3 Czechs) managed to escape via a underground tunnel codenamed Harry. Only three of them made it to Britain, however. The remaining 73 were captured and on Hitler’s command 50 of them were murdered by the Gestapo, regardless of their nationality. F/Lt Valenta was murdered by a Gestapo commando unit at the crossroads between the road from Sagan to Görlitz and the and the motorway from Berlin to Breslau. It took place on 31st May 1944. Arnošt Valenta thus became the only Czechoslovak member of the RAF who did not return from German captivity. By an irony of fate he was not shot because he was a Czech, but because he was one of the main proponents of the escape.

BATELKA Karel, Sgt, 311 Sqn., Air Gunner

Captured: 17/01/1942, on bombing raid to Bremen, flak damage above target, crashed Holland.

PoW no: 24771

From Stalag VIII-B, Lamsdorf to Stalag III, Sagan 15/07/42, to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 16/10/42, to Prague Pankrác 25/08/44, Pankrac to Oflag IVc, Colditz 22/09/44, liberated 16/04/45.

BAUMAN Václav, W/O, 501 Sqn., Pilot

Captured: 20/06/1942, near St Omer, France.

PoW no:

Because of injuries received when his aircraft was shot down on 20/06/42 was initial at the Hospital in St Omer, France, then in August ’42 to Hohenmark hospital. Later that month was moved to Stalag VIII B Lamsford, in September ’43 to Stalag Luft I, Barth, in November ’43 to Stalag Luft IV B, Gross Tychow then in February ’44 to Stalag Luft IV, Heidekrug. Because of the injuries he sustained when shot down, in July ’44 it was deceided to repatriate him. In September ’44 he was repatriated to Sweden and then by ship to England.

BRYKS Josef, F/Lt, 242 Sqn., Pilot

Shot down 17/06/1941, near Lille, France.

PoW no: 1363

To Dulag Luft 19/06/41 to 22/06/41, to Oflag IX, Spagenberg 22/06/41, to Oflag IVb, Mühlberg 08/10/41 to Oflag XXIB Szubin 22/09/42, escaped 04/03/43, to Stalag Luft III, Sagan 01/03/43, to Prague Pankrác 01/09/44, to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 22/09/44, to Oflag IVc, Colditz from 07/11/44 until liberated 16/04/45.

BUDIL Bohuslav, F/Lt, 312 Sqn., Pilot

Captured: 19/04/1944, Shot down over Belgium.

PoW no: 4233

To Dulag Luft, Oberursel, to Stalag Luft III, Sagan on 29/04/44, to Prague Pankrác 3/08/44, to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 19/08/44 until liberated 01/05/45.

BUFKA Vilém, W/O, 311 Sqn., Pilot

Captured 22/06/41, Wellington shot down by night-fighter off-coast of Holland, on return from bombing raid on Bremen, German, managed to get to shore but had suffered a suffered a brocken leg and ankle injuries when his aircraft had crashed, .

PoW no: 39160

Initially in German hospital, then to Stalag IXc, Bad Sulza to Stalag Luft III, Sagan 26/04/42, to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 16/10/42, to Prague Pankrác 23/07/44, 18/08/44 returned to Stalag Luft 1, Barth, to Oflag IVc, Colditz 10/10/44 until liberated 16/04/45.

BURDA František, F/Lt, 310 Sqn., Pilot

Captured: 27/02/1943, shot down by flak over France.

PoW no: 245

Oflag XXIb, Schubin to Stalag Luft III, Sagan  20/04/43, to Prague Pankrác 13/08/44, to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 19/08/44, to Oflag IVc, Colditz 10/09/44 until liberated 16/04/45.

BUŠINA Emil, P/O, 311 Sqn., Navigator

Captured: 06/02/1941, captured when aircraft was disorientated and landed by mistake on Luftwaffe airfield at Bolougne, France.

PoW no: 401

Dulag Luft, Oberursel to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 15/02/41, April ’42 to Stalag Luft III, Sagan 13/08/44, to Prague Pankrác, returned to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 19/08/44, to Oflag IVc, Colditz 10/9/44 until liberated 16/04/45.

ČERNÝ Otakar, F/Lt, 311 Sqn., Wireless Operator

Shot down 17/07/1941 on raid to Hamburg, Germany, captured 19/7/41.

PoW no: 3663

Warburg to Stalag Luft III, Sagan April ’42, late ’42 to Oflag XXIb, Schubin, returned to Sagan from Pawiak Prison, Poland Sept. ’43, to Prague Pankrác 14/08/44. to Oflag IVc, Colditz 26/10/44 until liberated 16/04/45.

CHALOUPKA Čeněk, Sgt, 312 Sqn., Pilot

Shot down 06/10/1941, near Dutch coast.

PoW no: 1356

From Dulag Luft, Oberursel to Stalag Luft 1, Barth Oct. ’41, to Colditz  22/01/43, to Prague Pankrác 14/08/44, to Oflag IVc, Colditz 31/08/44 until liberated 16/04/45.

CIGOŠ František, F/Lt, 311 Sqn., Pilot

Captured: 06/02/1941, captured when aircraft was disorientated and landed by mistake on Luftwaffe airfield at Bolougne, France.

PoW no: 402

Dulag Luft, Oberursel to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 15/02/41, April ’42 to Stalag Luft III, Sagan 14/08/44 to Prague Pankrác, returned to Barth 9/09/44, to Oflag IVc, Colditz 22/09/44 until liberated 16/04/45.

DVOŘÁK  Bedřich, P/O, 312 Sqn., Pilot

Captured: 03/06/1942, shot down over France.

PoW no: 39648

Spangenberg to Sagan 08/03/43, escaped 25/03/44, captured 09/04/44, to Prague Pankrác, to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 30/11/44, to Oflag IVc, Colditz 09/01/45 until liberated 16/04/45.

FISCHL Jiří Otto, P/O, 101 Sqn.,

Shot down by night fighter over Germany 16/02/44 in Lancaster Mk.III DV236 SR-G.

PoW no:

Dulag Luft, Oberursel to Stalag Luft III, Sagan Feb. ’44, evacuated to Farmstedt late Jan ’45.

KAŇOVSKÝ [Kennedy] Rostislav, F/Lt, 310 Sqn., Pilot

Captured: 05/09/1944, shot down by flak over Holland.

PoW no:

Dulag Luft, Oberursel, to Stalag Luft I, Barth 01/10/44 until liberated 01/05/45.

KILIÁN Václav, F/Lt, 311 Sqn., Air Gunner

Captured: 23/09/1940, Berlin, Germany, Damaged by Flak above target, Crashed in Holland.

PoW no: 3771

Oflag VIIb, Eichstatt to Stalag Luft III, Sagan ’42, 13/08/44 to Prague Pankrác, to Stalag Luft I, Barth 19/08/44, liberated 01/05/45.

KLVAŇA Jaroslav, W/O, 311 Sqn., Air Gunner

Captured: 14/04/1942, Raid on Dortmund, Flak damage above target, shot down by nightfighter over Holland.

PoW no: 244

Dulag Luft, Oberursel to Stalag Luft III, Sagan July ’42, to Stalag Luft I, Barth 16/10/42, to Oflag IVb, Mühlberg 03/11/43.

KNAP František, W/O, 311 Sqn., Air Gunner

Shot down 17/07/1941 on raid to Hamburg, Germany.

PoW no: 39285

Stalag IXc, Bad Sulza to Stalag Luft III, Sagan 26/4/42, to Stalag Luft I, Barth 16/10/42, 25/08/44 to Prague Pankrác, Sept. ’44 returned to Stalag Luft I, Barth, liberated 01/05/45.

KNOTEK František, W/O, 311 Sqn., Air Gunner

Captured: 23/09/1940, Berlin, Germany, Damaged by Flak above target, crashed in Holland.

PoW no: 315

From Berlin-Alt Moabit prison to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 12/10/40, to Stalag Luft III, Sagan June ’42, to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 16/10/42, to Oflag IVb, Mühlberg 03/11/43.

KOPAL Gustav, W/O, 311 Sqn., Air Gunner

Captured: 06/02/1941, captured when aircraft was disorientated and landed by mistake on Luftwaffe airfield at Bolougne, France.

PoW no: 441

From Dulag Luft, Oberursel to Stalag Luft I, Barth 15/02/41, April ’42 to Stalag Luft III, Sagan, 16/10/42 to Stalag Luft I, Barth, 04/05/43 escaped, captured 05/05/43, returned to Stalag Luft I, Barth 06/05/43 from Barth Police station, to Oflag IVb, Mühlberg 03/11/43.

KRESTA Otakar, W/O, 313 Sqn., Pilot

Captured: 12/04/1942, shot down over France.

PoW no: 166

Dulag Luft, Oberursel to Stalag Luft III, Sagan May ’42, to Stalag Luft I, Barth 16/10/42, to Oflag IVb, Mühlberg 03/11/43.

KŘÍŽEK Karel, F/Lt, 311 Sqn., Air Gunner

Captured: 06/02/1941, raid on Cologne, Germany.

PoW no: 407

Stalag Luft 1, Barth to Stalag Luft III, Sagan April ’42, 14/08/44 to Prague Pankrác.

MAŇÁK Jiří, S/Ldr, 312 Sqn., Pilot

Shot down 29/08/1943, Vlissingen, Holland.

PoW no: 2378

Dulag Luft, Oberursel to Stalag Luft III, Sagan 11/09/43, evacuated 27/01/45 to Farmstedt.

NETOPIL Bohumil, W/O, 19 Sqn., Pilot

Shot down 24/03/1942, Abbeville, France.

PoW no:

From Molsdorg [hospital] to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 16/01/43, to Oflag IVb, Mühlberg 03/11/43.

NOVOTNÝ Emanuel, W/O, 311 Sqn., Pilot

Shot down 16/10/1940, on raid to Bremen, Germany.

PoW no: 395

From Weisbaden prison to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 21/01/41, to Stalag Luft III, Sagan ’42, 16/10/42 to Prague Pankrác 25/08/44, Sept ’44 to Barth, to Oflag IVc, Colditz 10/10/44 until liberated 16/04/45.

NÝČ Jaroslav, W/O, 311 Sqn., Pilot

Shot down 17/07/1941 on raid to Hamburg, Germany.

PoW no: 39284

Stalag IXc, Bad Sulza to Stalag Luft III, Sagan 26/04/42, to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 16/10/42, to Oflag IVb, Mühlberg 03/11/43.

OCELKA Antonín, W/O, 312 Sqn, Pilot

Captured: 18/09/1944, shot down by flak over Holland.

PoW no:

PÁRA Vladimír, W/O, 311 Sqn., Pilot

Captured: 14/04/1942, on raid on Dortmund, flak damage above target, shot down by nightfighter over Holland.

PoW no: 6446

From Dulag Luft, Oberursel to Stalag Luft 1, Barth ’42, to Stalag Luft III, Sagan later the same year. 16/10/42 to Stalag Luft 1, Barth, 03/11/43 to Oflag IVb, Mühlberg.

PETR František, W/O, 311 Sqn., Pilot

Captured: 20/10/1941, raid on Bremen, Germany, forced landing in Holland.

PoW no: 24448

to Sagan 20/05/42 from Stalag VIII-B, Lamsdorf, to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 16/10/42, 03/11/43 to Oflag IVb, Mühlberg.

PŘÍSTUPA Gustav, F/Sgt, 312 Sqn., Pilot

Captured: 11/08/1944, shot down on operational flight over Holland.

PoW no:

PROCHÁZKA Václav, W/O, 311 Sqn., Pilot

Captured: 20/10/1941 on raid to Bremen, Germany, forced landing in Holland.

PoW no: 24472

From Stalag VIII-B, Lamsdorf to Stalag Luft III, Sagan 20/05/42, to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 16/10/42, to Prague Pankrác 25/08/44, Sept. ’44 returned to Stalag Luft 1, Barth, to Oflag IVc, Colditz 22/09/44 until liberated 16/04/45.

PROCHÁZKA Zdeněk, F/Lt, 311 Sqn., Navigator

Captured: 23/09/1940 on raid to Berlin, Germany, damaged by flak above target, Crashed in Holland.

PoW no: 3770

Warburg to Stalag Luft III, Sagan ’42, to Prague Pankrác 14/08/44, Sept ’44 to Stalag Luft 1, Barth, liberated 01/05/45.

ŠČERBA Josef, F/Lt, 311 Sqn., Wireless Operator/Air Gunner

Captured: 28/12/1941, raid on Wilhelmshaven, flak damage above target, crash landing in North Sea.

PoW no:

From Hohemark [hospital] to Stalag Luft III, Sagan June ’42, 20/07/44 to Annaberg for repatriation, repatriated to England 16/08/44.

ŠESTÁK Augustin, W/O, 311 Sqn., Air Gunner

Shot down 16/10/1940 on raid to Bremen, Germany.

PoW no: 396

From Weisbaden prison to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 21/01/41, to Stalag Luft III, Sagan ’42, returned from Sagan 16/10/42 and 03/11/43 to Oflag IVb, Mühlberg.

SICHROVSKÝ Zdeněk Josef, W/O, 311 Sqn., Pilot

Shot down 17/01/1942, on raid to Bremen Germany, flak damage above target, crashed in Holland.

PoW no: 12673

From Berlin [hospital] to Stalag Luft III, Sagan 05/10/42, to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 16/10/42, to Neubrandenburg [hospital] 22/07/43.

ŠIŠKA Alois, W/O, 311 Sqn., Pilot

Captured: 28/12/1941, raid on Wilhelmshaven, Flak damage above target, crash landing in North Sea.

PoW no: 39654

From Kloster Haina [Hospital] to Stalag Luft III, Sagan June ’42, June 43 to Stalag Luft 1, Barth, 25/08/44 to Prague Pankrác, returned to Stalag Luft 1, Barth Sept ’44, to Oflag IVc, Colditz 22/09/44, March ’45 to Hohenstein [Hospital]

ŠKARVADA Zdeněk, W/O, 310 Sqn., Pilot

Captured: 04/02/1942, engine failure during operational flight.

PoW no: 24756

Dulag Luft, Oberursel, on 11/03/42 moved to Stalag VIII-B, Lamsdorf to Stalag Luft III, Sagan 5/05/42 (21/05/42?), to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 16/10/42. Sept. ’43 for Stalag Luft I, Barth, September ’43 moved to Stalag IV b, Mühlberg, then to Stalag Luft IV, Heydekrug. In July ’44 camp evacuated because of advancing Russians, moved to Stalag Luft IV, Gross Tychow. On 6 January ’45 camp evacuated because of advancing Russians and PoW’s were on enforced 1000 km march before being liberated by Americans troops on 2 May ’45 near Schwerin Lake.

ŠNAJDR [Schneider] Josef Karel, W/O, 311 Sqn., Air Gunner

Captured: 17/01/1942, raid on Bremen, Germany, flak damage above target, crashed Holland.

PoW no: 181

To Stalag Luft III, Sagan Aug. ’42 from Bad Sulza, to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 16/10/42, 20/07/44 to Annaberg for repatriation.

ŠŤASTNÝ Karel, W/O, 311 Sqn., Pilot

Captured: 17/07/1941, raid on Hamburg, Germany.

PoW no: 39287

From Stalag IXc, Bad Sulza to Stalag Luft III, Sagan 26/04/42, to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 16/10/42, to Oflag IVb, Mühlberg. 03/11/43.

SŮSA Josef, W/O, 311 Sqn., Air Gunner

Captured: 20/10/1941, raid on Bremen, Germany, forced landing in Holland.

PoW no: 24446

From Stalag VIII-B, Lamsdorf to Stalag Luft III, Sagan 20/05/42, to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 16/10/42, to Prague Pankrác 25/08/44, to Colditz 27/10/44, liberated 16/04/45.

SVOBODA Pavel, W/O, 311 Sqn., Air Gunner

Captured: 28/12/1941, raid on Wilhelmshaven, flak damage above target, crash landing in North Sea.

PoW no: 24976

Hospital to Stalag Luft VIIIB, Lamsdorf June 1942.

TONDER Ivo Peter, F/Lt, 312 Sqn., Pilot

Captured: 03/06/1942, shot down over France.

PoW no: 561

From Dulag Luft, Oberursel to Stalag Luft III, Sagan 16/06/42, escaped 25/03/44, captured 28/03/44, held by Gestapo at Reichenberg till 16/04/44, moved to Prague Gestopo at Pankrác held in solitary confinement until 30/11/44, moved to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 30/11/44, to Oflag IVc, Colditz 08/01/45 until liberated 16/04/45.

TROJÁČEK Karel Josef, F/Lt, 311 Sqn., Pilot

Captured: 23/09/1940, raid on Berlin, Germany, damaged by flak above target, crashed in Holland.

PoW no: 3769

From Spangenberg to Stalag Luft III, Sagan 14/03/43, to Prague Pankrác 14/08/44, to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 02/09/44, to Oflag IVc, Colditz 09/01/45, liberated 16/04/45.

TRUHLÁŘ Jan, W/O, 312 Sqn., Pilot

Captured: 09/06/1941, shot down near St Omer, France.

PoW no: 39286

From Stalag IXc, Bad Sulza to Stalag Luft III, Sagan 26/04/42, to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 16/10/42, to Oflag IVc, Colditz 22/09/44, liberated 16/04/45.

TRUHLÁŘ Václav, F/O, 313 Sqn., Pilot

Captured: 10/04/1942, shot down over France.

PoW no:

From Stalag Luft III, Sagan to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 16/10/42, to Prague Pankrác 25/08/44, Sept ’44 returned from Pankrác, to Oflag IVc, Colditz 22/09/44, liberated 16/04/45.

URUBA Petr, W/O, 311 Sqn., Pilot

Captured: 06/02/1941, captured when aircraft was disorientated and landed by mistake on Luftwaffe airfield at Bolougne, France.

PoW no: 450

From Dulag Luft, Oberursel to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 15/02/41, March ’42 to Stalag Luft III, Sagan, returned to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 16/10/42, to Prague Pankrác 23/07/44, returned to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 18/08/44, to Oflag IVc, Colditz 10/09/44 until liberated 16/04/45.

VALÁŠEK Karel, F/O, 313 Sqn., Pilot

PoW no: 823

Captured: 19/04/1944, shot down by flak over France.

Captured August 1945 after evading Germans since he was shot down. At Dulag Luft interrogation centre, Oberursel, beginning of September 1944, then to Stalag Luft VII, Bankau, Poland. January 1945 camp evacuated because of advancing Russians and PoW’s marched to Stalag III-A, near Luckenwalde. Escaped with other PoW’s and reach the American lines.

VALENTA Arnošt, F/Lt, 311 Sqn., Wireless Operator

Captured: 06/02/1941, captured when aircraft was disorientated and landed by mistake on Luftwaffe airfield at Bolougne, France.

PoW no: 415

From Dulag Luft, Oberursel to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 15/02/41, to Stalag Luft III, Sagan March ’42, escaped 25/03/44, murdered 31/03/44.

VALNER Bedřich, W/O, 311 Sqn., Wireless Operator

Captured: 20/10/1941, raid on Bremen, Germany, emergency landing in Holland.

PoW no: 24441

From Stalag VIII-B, Lamsdorf to Stalag Luft III, Sagan 20/05/42, to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 16/10/42, to Oflag IVb, Mühlberg 03/11/43.

VESELÝ Erazim, F/Lt, 311 Sqn., Navigator

Captured: 20/10/1941, raid on Bremen, Germany, emergency landed in Holland.

PoW no: 662

From Dulag Luft, Oberursel to Stalag Luft III, Sagan  Oct. ’41, to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 16/10/42, to Prague Pankrác 14/08/44, to Oflag IVc, Colditz 15/09/44 until liberated 16/04/45.

ZÁBRŠ Arnošt, W/O, 311 Sqn., Pilot

Captured: 23/09/1940, raid on Berlin, Germany, damaged by flak above target, crashed in Holland.

PoW no: 18350

From Stalag VIII-B, Lamsdorf to Stalag Luft III, Sagan April ’42, to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 16/10/42, to Hohenstein Hospital [sanitorium] July ’44.

ZAFOUK Jaroslav, F/Lt, 311 Sqn., Navigator

Captured: 17/07/1941, raid on Hamburg, Germany.

PoW no: 3661

Arrived 19/06/42 at Prague Pankrác, to Oflag IVc, Colditz, returned to Pankrac 14/08/44.

ZAPLETAL Milan František, F/Lt, 311 Sqn., Navigator, Air Gunner

Captured: 14/04/1942, raid on Dortmund, flak damage above target, shot down by nightfighter over Holland.

PoW no: 6445

From Obermansfeld [hospital] to Stalag Luft III, Sagan, to Prague Pankrác 14/08/44, to Stalag Luft 1, Barth Sept ’44, liberated 01/05/45.

ZVOLENSKÝ Jozef, W/O 311 Sqn., Wireless Operator/Air Gunner

Captured: 20/10/1941, raid on Bremen, Germany, emergency landing in Holland.

PoW no: 2449

From Stalag VIII-B, Lamsdorf to Stalag Luft III, Sagan 20/05/42, to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 16/10/42, to Prague Pankrác 23/07/44, returned to Stalag Luft 1, Barth 18/08/44, liberated 01/05/45.

Czechoslovak PoW's Stalag Luft I, Barth, 1945



© PhDr. Jiří Rajlich

Article last updated 29 December 2016




This entry was posted in 310 Sqd, 311 Sqd, 312 Sqd, 313 Sqd, POW. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Czechoslovak Prisoners of War

  1. Leszek Filipek says:

    Hi, I am trying to trace my fathers role in 5 Pulk Artylerii Ciezkie, Filipek Michalf (Michael) birthplace Hermanice 1914, I do have some official paper work from WW11 also a photo of the camp for POW somewhere in Europe

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