Poppy

Gino Dal Ben

Amica at Villa Da Vinci

Foreign Service – 25th Regiment, Italian Army

As a member of the 25th Regiment in the Italian Army, Gino was a foot soldier during World War II. After training in Cervino Friuli, Italy for 3 months, he was deployed to Yugoslavia.

Gino served on the front lines and became an expert flame thrower. When he returned home, he was captured as a prisoner of war by the Germans.

“The Germans captured two hundred Italian soldiers in my town and we became POWs in Italy during World War II. We were kept at Pricenare with one thousand other POWs.

“I was the only one not in uniform as I had made it home to change before they caught us. All of the soldiers were made to work and we had to make lodgings for the guards and the POWs. The food was scarce and they only gave us boiled vegetables. We made a hole in the fence so we could get the dead wolves that were killed by the farmers. We always returned so that retaliation against the other POWs did not occur. Some of the guards knew we snuck out to get food and they looked the other way and took pity on us.”

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