- The Online Reference Guide to World War II German Helmets 1933-1945

    Recollections of German Veterans :  Heinz Gonnermann - Fallschirmjäger Afrika

Photo:  A 1943 wartime photo of Heinz Gonnermann.


Interviewed October 2002:

Heinz Gonnermann served with the 10 Kompanie Regiment "Baranthin" in the Division "Hasso von Manteufel" serving in North Africa in 1943.  As a German paratrooper, he arrived in Africa at Mateur, where he initially served as a motorcycle dispatch rider (Kradmelder).  Later Heinz also served as a crew member on a 7.5 cm Pak.

When questioned about his helmet, Heinz recalled that he was never issued a Fallschirmjäger helmet.  He stated that he wore one during training in Germany, but the equipment (including the helmet) issued for jump training was later returned once the training period was complete.  After basic training, he was transported by train to Italy.  After transport to the African coastline, he was reissued equipment in Mateur.  This included a standard M1935 double decal helmet and not the typical Fallschirmjäger helmet.

The helmet shown above is a M1935 Luftwaffe double decal helmet.  Heinz recalls that the helmets were painted by spray gun at the Kompanie's motor pool using standard flat tan camouflage paint.  The decals were entirely painted over.  Heinz recalls the helmets were placed on the ground and sprayed all in a single batch.

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  - The Online Reference Guide to World War II German Helmets 1933-1945

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