Monday, July 12, 2010

First over the Wall

I was reading about defectors to the West (don't ask...I have a fascinating life) and was taken in by this Wikipedia entry and photo.

Conrad Schumann was a 18-year-old border guard in East Germany and on the third day of the construction of the Berlin Wall, he made a break for the West, effortlessly leaping the then-tiny wall, which was then just a tangle of barbed wire.

This sentence puts a lump in my throat: "As the people on the Western side shouted Komm rĂ¼ber! ("come over"), Schumann jumped the barbed wire and was driven away at high speeds by a waiting West Berlin police car."

Come over. And he did, and lived there the rest of his life.

Sadly, he suffered from depression, and committed suicide in 1998, hanging himself in his orchard.

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