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Luebeck Germany Direction Finding Site

Not solely a DF Detachment as we think of them, but rather DF was one of several SIGINT activities. The Lubecker's Association for those who served there is the by far the best place for contact and information.

Late 50s-early 60s Luebeck DF Site"The Site was actually near the small village of Krummessa, out in a big cow pasture".~~Jim Miller. Photo used by permission of the Luebeck Association.

The direction finding effort was first set-up by Dick Strader in 57/58. Excerpt from Bremerhaven Det pages by Richard (Chick) Foote:

"The Det was turned over to Bad Aibling sometime in 1957/58 and we were redeployed to form two new DF sites, one at Helmstead and the second at Lubeck. I had the Helmstead Det until recalled to Kassel in late 1958 and subsequent rotation to CONUS. Dick Strader set up the Lubeck site."

Memories of TDY trip by Ron Knief (at the time, a member of ASAE SIT Maintenance Team):
I was assigned to a DF team, which was tasked with keeping all the DF sites in Europe in tune. That included the R-390 receivers and all the ancillary DF equipment that went into a DF site. On one our trips the team went to Luebeck and Helmstedt, which were located in the British zone. We wore civilian clothes (something to do with the Four Powers Agreements) and drove a deuce and a half with our equipment in it and a jeep that carried the other two of the four-man team. The German girls in the British zones, by and large, had seen little or nothing of Americans and we were welcomed everywhere. We had some rather leading comments scrawled in the dust of our vehicles when we stopped for lunch on the way up. CLICK HERE FOR THE REST OF THE STORY


The Rest of Ron Knief's Story

When we arrived in downtown Luebeck during the noon rush hour (picture four guys wearing civvies driving two U.S. vehicles) we came to a major intersection in the center of the city and a German cop in a full length white leather coat blew his whistle stopping traffic in all four directions and bowing low waved us through with a smile. We responded with an enthusiastic wave. I thought "Hey I like this place!" The GIs hadn't ruined the relations with the Germans up there! I loved Luebeck. We stayed at a small quite nice hotel which abutted the outside of the city walls of Luebeck. The maids would leave little notes on our pillows.

Luebeck had a river running through it which split and went around each side of the center of the city. I spent my time chasing the local gals around two large ships anchored on the river which were converted to great night clubs. One was a bit upscale and had an older crowd. The other, my favorite, was located on the other branch of the river and encompassed three different decks. There was a band playing on a small balcony in an open area midway between the decks You could jump on a canvas slide to take you from higher to lower decks. It was a great place! One ship was anchored in one branch and the other in the opposite branch of the river. I met a German nurse at one of the ships and kept in touch with her after I left Luebeck. She took me to the Schiffergesellschaft which was founded in the 1500s. Beautiful place with huge wooden tables and the ever available German beer. The tables were of unfinished wood and had been there for generations. It amazed me that they had no initials carved into them as they would have had they been in the States


I remember how envious I was of the guys who were assigned to the Luebeck site. I thought the city was beautiful and the people friendly.

Later when I lived in the Los Angeles area I met a German (now a U.S. citizen) who had lived in Luebeck for some years. He still works for the County of Los Angeles as a data processing supervisor. He had been born in Dresden and witnessed the bombing of Dresden from the country side where he had been sent for safety. He had pushed a 2 wheeled cart with the family belongings the 180 miles from Berlin to Luebeck on foot along with his sister and mother at the end of the war. We forget the misery that the people in those cities went through in years past. Amazing they were still as friendly as they were!
Ron Knief