Dr. Erich Kaestner (Kastner ) March 10 1900 – January 1 2008

Discussion in 'Military Biographies' started by liverpool annie, May 14, 2009.

  1. liverpool annie

    liverpool annie New Member

    Dr. Erich Kastner (March 10, 1900 – January 1, 2008) was the last documented World War I veteran who fought for the German Empire (including all nationalities and ethnic groups) and the final one who was born in Germany.

    Consequently he was the last Central Powers combatant of the Western Front. He was also the second oldest man in Germany. He was not the final veteran living in Germany. Franz Kunstler was an ethnic German born in Hungary who fought for the Austro-Hungarian Empire, migrating to Germany in 1946 and subsequently becoming a German citizen.

    Born in Leipzig-Schonefeld in 1900, Kastner joined the German Army in July 1918, in the "Sonder-Bataillon Hauck" (unsure information ) and served on the Western Front in Flanders. It is said that he marched in a parade in front of Kaiser Wilhelm II in November 1918 (unsure information. He rejoined the military in 1939 and during the Second World War was a Major serving as ground support for the Luftwaffe, mostly in France

    Kastner earned a doctorate degree in law from University of Jena in 1924 with a dissertation on Das landwirtschaftliche Pachtwesen und die Pachtschutzordnung unter besonderer Beleuchtung der Verhältnisse des früheren Großherzogtums Sachsen-Weimar-Eisenach (The legal institute of agricultural leasehold and the leasehold protection act with special regard to the situation in the former Grand Duchy of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach). He subsequently worked as a judge at the Higher Regional Court (Oberlandesgericht), for which work he was awarded the Lower Saxony Merit Cross, 1st Class - Kastner was also honored by Germany's president because of his 75-year marriage with his wife Maria, who died in 2003 at the age of 102, soon after the celebration Both had lived in Hanover since 1945. Some months before his death, he moved to a retirement home in Pulheim near Cologne.


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