Page 36 - Chiron Autumn 2018
P. 36

 Dear Sir,
I have just read my copy of Chiron Calling and what a joy to read the magazine. The following might be of interest or even stimulate Mr Rob McIntosh’s ‘Writer’s Block’.
I had already completed National Service, but returned to join the regulars and chose a career in the RAVC. After basic training at Melton Mowbray, I was posted to the War Dog Training Unit in Sennelager in the early 60s and this is where I recount some of my memories with the MSOs (Mixed Services Organisation, (better known as Mojos to some) and WRAC groom/kennel maids. I also spent some time in the Stores and the Stables. There were two Chief Officers in charge of the mostly Yugoslav MSOs. One was called Durer and was based at the MSO barracks at Schlangen. Whenever the MSOs were on parade with their dogs at the WDTU, they would bring their meal with them. This consisted of soup with nice lumps of fatty pork. As the MSOs walked with short steps, their dogs had to comply. I became quite friendly with many of them and Durer thought it fun to teach me a few words of Yugoslav, and needless to say some of the words were not in the best taste which often brought some laughter among those present.
Then there was a gardener who had a green house in the unit and everyone
Letter to the Editor
enjoyed his produce. He fell out with the Commanding Officer once, much to our amusement. The WRAC had two Sergeants in charge. One was a charming slim young lady called Rita Naylor and she had one green eye and the other was blue and she had brilliant white teeth. She shared her duty with Sgt Nesworthy. However, Sgt Nesworthy got married and left the Army, which we all knew broke Rita’s heart.
Durer thought it fun to teach me a few words ofYugoslav, and needless to say some of the words were not in the best taste
There were several Germans employed in the Offices and one, Herr Moser, had been a Luftwaffe pilot during WW2 and he used to tell us stories about how wonderful Goering was, as he could remember all the airmen’s personal family details. Herr Moser was excellent at dancing the Viennese dance and we would all admire him at the annual Corps Dance. His aircraft was shot down over Tilbury and the story he told us about the Home guard surrounding him after his parachute had landed sounded just like ‘Dad’s Army’ stuff.
There was another German lady who was a clerk and she used to do a survey on who went to concerts. She used to disagree with me over Ravel’s Bolero, saying that it was too repetitive.
Our CSM at the time was Sam Perry, who many of our readers will know. He was a very strict, but at the same time a kind and fair Sergeant Major who ran the unit in a marvellous way, and I owe a lot to him. Sgt Eames was in charge of Stores, and he was also a brilliant horseman/rider. He eventually became the RSM. I remember visiting him in hospital some years after he left the Army, but sadly he died soon after. Amongst the NCO was another great saddler who had the same name as one of the previous Commanding Officers. He was so skilled at making saddles.
One soldier with whom I shared a room was LCpl Dennis Higgins who could handle a Suffolk punch and he had the job of looking after the newly purchased dogs in quarantine. These dogs were so unpredictable and ferocious. Higgins had been a Yorkshire coal miner before joining up and he had a strong Yorkshire accent with the usual ‘Thee and thou’. I hope that my little story will be of interest to some readers.
Yours sincerely,
HJ Dobree
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