For many years now, my avatar for blogging has been the face of Hauptmann Wilhelm Traub. Hpt. Traub served with the 305 Pioneer Battalion and is today still listed as MIA from the Battle of Stalingrad. Jason D. Mark's exceptional book, Into Oblivion, contains some good snippets related to Traub's service with the 305. There are some fine pictures as well. Of note is the helmet cover utilized by Traub. I haven't seen a similar one in other pictures. So Traub can be identified in Stalingrad pics from his helmet cover.
War is a terrible thing and I count myself extremely lucky to have never experienced it. Wilhelm Traub's image from those dark days at Stalingrad has always reached out to me and in his weary eyes you see something of the depths of horror he must have witnessed at Stalingrad.
While, I will never glorify war, I will always try to honor the memory and sacrifice of those men and women who served their nation when called, no matter the right or wrong of their causes. Bravery and duty are not unique to one side or one cause. Good men throughout history have died for causes that were undeserving of their valor and devotion.
So here's to you Hauptmann Traub.
Traub's distinctive helmet cover gives him away on the far left of frame.