In November 1944, units of the 28th U.S. Infantry Division advanced to the strategically important location of Schmidt via the so-called Kall Trail, a dirt road that leads through thick forest. After eight days of fighting, the battle for Schmidt, also known as the All Souls' Battle, ended with the defeat of the Americans. The exhausted US soldiers were forced to withdraw behind the front line in Vossenack.When they left Schmidt, the survivors had to cross the Kall Bridge when parts of the surrounding valley had already been recaptured by the Germans. Between November 7 and 9, the German medical officer Dr. Negotiate some fire breaks for the area around the bridge so that wounded soldiers on both sides could be treated. The effect of these fire breaks was limited due to the confusing terrain. Nevertheless, German doctors and paramedics saved the lives of many US soldiers.After the war, the governor of the State of Pennsylvania honored Dr. Stüttgen for this act of humanity. The events around Kall Bridge were immortalized in the painting "A Time for Healing", which can be seen in the Museum of the United States National Guard. A copy of the painting is in the “Hürtgenwald 1944 and in Peace” museum by Vossenack.Today there is a sculpture by Michael Pohlmann on the bridge, which reminds the visitor of this moment of humanity amid the horror. "I didn't want to create a heroic monument, no theatrical representation, no pathos, but to appear more modestly with a simple shape carved in stone, to appreciate the place where it happened. A place where everything might have started rationally, but then became more and more irrational and went completely out of joint, until reason - or was it just emotion? - made an encounter of humanity possible. ” Source: europeremembers.com/de/destination/kall-brucke
June 7, 2020
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