The hospital

Fortunately there are only a few patients in the infirmary. Two are seriously wounded (dolls don’t move) and two other patients, well wrapped up in plaster cast. All of this because of the battle in the “Hürtgenwald”.The day begins with taking care of the wounded. Bandages are changed, urinals emptied. One of the nurses is send off to get breakfast. They make their own coffee on small burners, which are normally used to sterilize operating equipment.

 There’s hardly any shooting at the front nowadays, but they always have to be prepared for incoming wounded. After breakfast the ambulance is checked if all the materials are there. Someone from the Technical Service drops by to check the car in that respect : he will start the car and try whether it is ready to be used at any moment. The chief nurse wants to have a talk with the motor orderly for an escort on busy roads The condition of one of the patients is too bad to be transported. A small operation has to be done. Everything is prepared and all the materials are put in place.

Today a patrol unit will be send on a mission, so some first aid materials have to be made ready. They are picked up at 10.45

At 10.50 the head nurse has a talk with the motor orderly for an escort the next day.

At 11.15 a call from the patrol unit comes in: they ‘ve captured two Germans one of which seems badly injured, and he is unable to walk. The Ambulance rushes off to the location indicated by radio. The place indicated cannot be reached by car, they have to carry the wounded man out on a stretcher, after giving first aid to the patient.

 They drive back to hospital and care for him. He still has a bullet in a critical place and that will have to be removed in an operation that afternoon.

Just after they’ve finished General Cota drops in for inspection. (12:00) He’d like to interrogate the Germans as soon as possible.

 General Cota talks with some of the other injured men. After inspection the nurses help the patients who can walk  to lunch.  One of the Medical staff goes down to the bakery and kitchen to pick up bread and food for lunch for the bedridden patients and themselves. The members of the medical staff who are not needed to look after the wounded go to lunch as well. They also attend roll call, as Cota will decorate two of men for bravery in the Hurtgen Forest.

After lunch  the operating room is prepared and the bullet can now successfully be removed. Afterwards the wound is properly dressed. The operating room needs to be cleaned before the greater part of the hospital crew  and the patients will be able to attend the Show, Thanksgiving dinner and Party at the bar. Together they get the patients who are able to walk or into jeeps for transport to the Show ground. Only one nurse stays behind to look after those who can’t come. o

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