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Günther Driewer * 1934
Bremer Straße 157 (Harburg, Eißendorf)
Günther Driewer, born on 2 Sept. 1934 in Harburg, admitted on 27 Jan. 1945 to the Langenhorn "sanatorium and nursing home” (Heil- und Pflegeanstalt Langenhorn) ‘transferred’ on 14 Feb. 1945 to the Rickling Asylum (Ricklinger Anstalten) "sanatorium and nursing home” of the State Association for Inner Mission (Landesverein für Innere Mission), died there on 11 May 1945.
Bremer Strasse 157 (formerly 155), Harburg District
Günther Driewer was born in Harburg on 2 Sept. 1934. He lived with his mother Anni and a younger sister at Bremer Strasse 155 with grandmother Jacoba Heckmann. Although he was disabled from birth and his physical problems intensified over the years, he was cared for by his family.
On 21 Nov. 1944, the house at Bremer Strasse 155 was destroyed by an air raid. Neighbors reported, "The mother carried the boy on her back through a breach in the wall.” The grandmother was killed in this bombing. Günther was admitted to Barmbek General Hospital, and his mother and sister were evacuated to Lower Saxony.
In the medical reports, Günther Driewer’s calm behavior is described. He answered questions only with yes or no and he played "melodies played or sung to him on the harmonica.” On 26 Jan. 1945, the patient file of Barmbek General Hospital states, "The child means a considerable burden for our ward and is therefore transferred to Langenhorn.”
He was admitted to Langenhorn on 27 Jan. 1945, and his calm behavior was mentioned there as well. Why he was transferred to Rickling on 14 Feb. 1945 is not clear from the files.
The Rickling Asylum was hopelessly overcrowded with almost 1,000 patients and it was considered by the Nazi authorities as a means for extremely low-cost detention of patients. By order, the patients’ rations were reduced to a minimum. The patients were underfed, many starved to death.
Günther Driewer died on 11 May 1945.
Translator: Erwin Fink
Kindly supported by the Hermann Reemtsma Stiftung, Hamburg.
Stand: May 2021
© Margrit und Helmut Rüth
Quellen: StaH 352-8/7 Sign. Abl. 1/1995 Nr. 34350, Generalregister Sterbefälle 1941-1945 (Best. 332-5 Nr. 49085), Adressbuch Harburg-Wilhelmsburg 1937; Hamburger Gedenkbuch Euthanasie. Die Toten 1939-1945 (Jenner/Wunder), Hamburg 2019, S. 160.