The Incredible Story of Joseph Beyrle, the Only American to fight for both the U.S. and Russian Army in WWII

Dec 2015
3,699
USA
#1
From the following article we can learn about the hardworking hero Joseph Beyrle, the kind of everyday American whom helped to make the USA the strongest and greatest country in the world.

Beyrle like so many Americans of the 1930s, grew up in a tough time. Beyrle was from a working class family which suffered through the great depression. When FDR came into office in 1933 though, Americans started to feel hope again, Beyrle was one of them. Beyrle was a world class athlete whom could have attended Notre Dame University via a baseball scholarship. But instead Beyrle felt a higher calling and joined the US military in 1942 after graduating high school. Beyrle was in the Screaming Eagles during his stint in the US military, a parachute division...Beyrle was also an expert in demolitions.

Beyrle first saw action behind enemy lines, serving important missions before D-Day such as providing resources to the French resistance in occupied France.

When D Day, the allied invasion of Normandy on June 6th 1944 came about...Beyrle was one of the paratroopers sent in for recon and sabotage prior to the over 5000 ships landing on Normandy. It was one of the most dangerous events of the entire war, that is when Beyrle and many other Americans parachuted into massive enemy fire from the axis forces prior to the ship landings on D Day. Many Americans were killed immediately after disembarking from their planes, Beyrle was lucky to survive the AA fire, and landed on a Church. But Beyrle was seperated from the Americans...

Lost now but still with hope Beyrle launched solo operations against various German targets before finally being caught by the Germans. Beyrle would now be a POW for the next few months figuring out ways with fellow Americans to escape. Once such idea was to try and find the Soviet forces. Considering the glaring similarities between Soviets and Americans.. Beyrle and other Americans felt if they could find the Russians, life would be better. While in captivity, Beryle and fellow soldiers tried to escape their German captors on numerous occasions, Beyrle himself was twice caught attempting to escape and tortured by the Gestapo. Finally in the 3rd attempt, Beyrle was able to successfully escape in Jan of 1945..as Beyrle was away from a German camp he ran into Soviet forces and finally after months as a POW found freedom...

Now in Soviet hands Beyrle was able to convince a female Soviet officer that he really was an American. Beyrle had the goal of convincing the Soviets to let him fight, eventually the Soviets agreed and now Beyrle was enlisted in the Soviet forces for about a month. One action Beyrle was involved in as a Soviet, was the liberation of the very camp Stalig III C that held Beyrle and other Americans. Some time later still fighting as a Soviet Beyrle was wounded in combat in February of 1945. The Soviet leader Georgy Zhukov wanted to meet the American/Soviet hero, and here Zhukov helped Beyrle get the papers needed to rejoin the American forces. It was a pleasing suprise for the family of Beyrle , for the loved ones had orignally been told by US military personal that Beyrle had died in the D D landings.

Beyrle is to this day celebrated in both the USA and Russia for his contributions during WW2.

The Incredible Story of Joseph Beyrle, the Only American to fight for both the U.S. and Russian Army in WWII - Page 2 of 2
 
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