Photos of Hetzers

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These views are of the actual Swiss G-13 which was received by the Texas Military Forces Museum, prior to modification to wartime German Hetzer appearance. The actual color of the Swiss vehicle is similar to bronze green used on British tanks.
Missing from the vehicle (already removed prior to photos being taken) is the large cable reel and field telephone/intercom which mounts on the left rear of the vehicle. This may be used by persons outside the vehicle to communicate with the vehicle commander. The wire which connected to the telephone can be seen hanging next to the stoplight in the center photo, top row.

This is a color view of the driver's area, showing the dashboard/instrument panel. The red container holds the mixture of ether and fuel which is pumped into the diesel engine to assist with starting the engine in cold weather. Above the episcopes can be seen the head protector padding made of leather which protects the driver's head while driving over bumpy ground. Next to the starting fluid container may be seen another leather pad mounted on the side of the hull. This protects the driver's knee when driving over over rough terrain. His knee is often next to the hull when shifting gear. The shift pedal is the one next to the hull.

This is a wider view of the same area shown above. It clearly shows the horizontal levers which the driver uses to steer the vehicle. The episcopes are removed in this view. The gear selector lever is shown in the lower right corner of the photo and has a white knob.

These photos show our Hetzer at some of the functions where it has been used. The black and white photo shows it serving in the field during a reenactment tactcal battle at Camp Swift in central Texas. The center color photo shows the vehicle with foliage camo. prior to a public show battle held at Camp Mabry in Austin, Texas. The event is called "Muster Day". The  photo on the right shows the Hetzer alongside a M-5 Stuart at a public display celebrating the Fourth of July, "Independance Day" at nearby Fort Hood in Killeen, Texas. The author of this web page is shown on the right directly above the main gun muzzle.

This four-view is of a WWII Hetzer that is on display at the Canadian Forces Base of Camp Borden. It was captured by Canadian Forces during the war and brought back to Camp Borden for examination and evaluation along with several other German armored vehicles. It is currently beginning the restoration process which is being conducted by volunteers from a group of fellow reenactors in Canada. Note that the gun barrel is stuck in the recoiled position. This Hetzer is an early production model (one of the first fifty produced.) It has been fitted with the heavy duty towing hitch usually seen on Bergehetzers but which was fitted on early production vehicles. It is clearly shown on the rear view, directly below the muffler. (Photos of the Camp Borden Hetzer were graciously provided by Doug Zbetnoff. My apologies to Doug for forgetting to credit the photos earlier!)

Henry Threm
13 July, 1920 - 29 January, 1992

    This is a photo of my late friend, Henry, who served as a tanker in the 24th Panzer Division during the war. He joined the Heer as a member of a signals unit and participated in the invasion of France in 1940. He was later transferred to the armor school and became a tanker where he was eventually assigned to the 24th Panzer Division. He fought in Stalingrad but was flown out before the surrender and continued to serve with the 24th when it was rebuilt. At the end of the war, his unit surrendered to the Americans who turned them over to the Soviets. He survived several years in a Soviet Gulag but was repatriated because he had been born in the Alsace-Lorraine region which became French territory after the war, thus making him a French citizen. (In fact, Henry's brother had joined the French Army when the war started but Henry had joined the German army. They carried dual citizenship prior to the war.) Henry told me that three or four other members of his unit were repatriated because they had been born in the Alsace-Lorraine region and to his knowledge, none of the comrades they left behind ever made it back to Germany from the gulags. After going back to school and getting his degree, Henry eventually made his way to the United States and became an American citizen.

I first came into contact with Henry when he called my place of work after seeing a picture of me in the newspaper in an article about a model diorama I built with a SdKfz 251 in it. He wanted to talk with someone who was interested in German armor. Thus began a great friendship during which I learned a great deal about German armor. Before he passed away, I was able to get Henry inside our Hetzer and let him ride around with some of my friends in an original Kübelwagen after observing some of the public show battles. He even visited our reenactment unit in the field and spent time around the camp fire talking with us and another German veteran about his experiences. It has been my honor to have been Henry's friend.

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© 26 June, 1999

Richard Gruetzner