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First Name: Gabriel
Born: 21 December 1915
Place of Birth: Ebenhausen
Ebenhausen is a little village in Bavaria
which is situated south of the town of Ingolstadt on the road towards Munich.
Family: Gabriel Kopold’s father (Johann
Kopold) was a little farmer, who before and during the war also got a job
in the Heereszeugamt (Army Arsenal) in Ingolstadt and in the Heeresmunitionsanstalt
(Army Ammunition Plant) which was situated near their home village. For
his merits during his duty in these army installations he was awarded the
non-combatants version of the Verdienst-Medaille of the Kriegsverdienstkreuz
(A medal for meritorious contributions to the war effort).
Gabriel Kopolds mother (Viktoria
Kopold) gave birth to 9 children (6 boys and 3 girls). One of Gabriel’s
sisters (Cilli) died as a newborn baby and one of his brothers (Christian)
died at age two, when he fell into a little stream near their village.
When Gabriel left school about 1929,
Germany was in a terrible economical situation experiencing a rate of unemployment
well over 20%. Thus, Gabriel only occasionally got work at farms near his
home village and at road construction sites.
| From October 1936 to March 1937
he served in the Reichs-Arbeitsdienst, a labour service mandatory for all
young Germans (male and female) during the 3rd Reich.
For this service he and some of his
friends had been detached to an Reichsarbeitsdienstlager in Oschatz, a
town in Saxony. For most of them this was the first time that they had
been outside Bavaria.
He later - with disgust - told that
it was in Saxony that for the first time he was to eat herring with potatoes
rather than pork and dumplings.
Site created, Maintained and Copyrighted by Peter Denniston 1997,1998