The last known Capital Punishment in Germany

Capital Punishment has been non-existant in former West Germany since shortly after WW2. It took a squaddie to re-insitute it - if only temporarily.

Crusader '80 was a 1(BR) Corps FTX, now just a dim memory for some. These were the days when GE really was a huge training area where Tom could romp and play to his heart's content and "anything goes". Well - almost anything...................

It was the in the days of Mk1 432s which were petrol engined and had a penchant for frequent flatulence from their exhausts. During this Mother of all FTXs, an Infantry Coy of these museum pieces was waiting at a level crossing and at the head of the queue was a farm horse and cart. The 432s were particularly prone to let one go when they had been idling for some time so, unsurprisingly one of the APCs let off a backfire of spectacular proportions. The horse - more used to the tranquil idyll of rural North Rhine Westfalia - was more than a little startled out of its pastoral reverie and took to bucking in an extre,mely alarming fashion.

The socially aware soldiery - who had dismounted for a smoke break - rushed forward to help calm the beast, as did an elderly German man who had been walking his dog. He asked one of the Toms to hold on to his dog while he did his bit to help. However, the Tom was just as keen to play his part in the most exciting action he had seen all excercise, so he slipped the end of the dog's lead over the end of the railway crossing barrier. Unfortunately, in all the excitement he either did not hear the express train as it passed, or realise its significance and as sure as day follows night, the barriers raised once the train was past.

You can imagine the tragic consequences - Oh do try - and we shall draw a veil over the reaction of the German Gentleman, the outcome for the Company Commander and the CSM's gentle words to the poor Tom - who as ever was just trying to help.

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