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Pappel was victim at Malmedy Massacre

In the early morning hours of Dec. 17, 1944, Kampfgruppe Peiper drove into Buchholz Station capturing Rick Render and other men of 3/394.

Dick Byers and Lt. Harold R. Mayer managed to escape on foot while a third member of their party, Sgt. Curtis Fletcher was captured and Sgt. Elmer P. Klug of Company L was killed.

The 1st SS Panzer Regiment then entered Honsfeld, capturing Luther Symons, Harley Marshall, and Bob Gabriel, among others.

The Germans marched them through Lanzerath with two civilians, one of whom they murdered in a wood shed next to the Café Palm. The second civilian was wounded but survived.

In Honsfeld, the Waffen SS murdered American POWs. Next they approached Bullingen.

A platoon of Service Battery 924th FA Bn., under Lt. Jack Varner was sent to man a roadblock on the south edge of Bullingen. Grant Yager, the bazooka man, disabled a Panther tank before he and the rest of the platoon were taken prisoner.

He, Santos Maldanado, and Art Romaker witnessed Bernard Pappel's murder shortly after they had given him first aid.

Frank Garrett, Al Goldstein, and Roger Foehringer also were there that morning. Bill Meyer was in his truck on the main street of Bullingen when Kampfgruppe Peiper emerged from the Honsfeld road. He fortunately escaped.

The division artillery pilots escaped from their airfield and flew their planes to the First Army airstrip near spa. They later were decorated for bravery.

All the men in this story were members of the 99th Infantry Division and were in the midst of the Battle of the Bulge.

Some 63 years later, a brand new museum is to be opened near the site of the Malmedy Massacre.

The Baugnez 44 Historical Center at the Baugnez crossroads near Malmedy will open Dec. 17.

Tours International has been appointed the official tour organizer for the opening ceremonies of the center.

Will Cavanagh and Danny S. Parker will guide the tour and survivor Ted Paluch will attend as the guest of honor.

"At long last, a museum in Belgium will commemorate the memory of those who died at the Baugnez crossroads," said Cavanagh.

"It would be great to have a few 99'ers along who were captured when the Germans entered Lanzerath, Buchholz Station, Honsfeld, and Bullingen," he concluded.

More information is available on the company's website, www.tours-international.co.uk/tours/military.

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