Father Guidos Army

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  1. Army Parents' Network | The British Army
  2. Guido von Mengden
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Army Parents' Network | The British Army

In , at the age of 18, he watched as the German army marched into Austria and annexed his country. Soon afterward, he found himself drafted into the German army.


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Naturally alarmed by this prospect, his father — then living in Chicago — encouraged him to travel to America. Like most European refugees of the period, his route was circuitous. He first went to Sofia, Bulgaria where his mother co-owned a coffee shop.

There he spoke to someone in the American consulate who successfully helped manage the difficult feat of getting him an exit visa. Weigend was a linguist with facility in several European languages, so his transition to life in America was relatively painless. He took advantage of his good fortune, timing, and location by soon enrolling at the University of Chicago, graduating in He became a US citizen in His talent for languages he spoke eight and his familiarity with European geography and cultures was put to quick use by his adopted country.

It was long suspected, although never completely confirmed by him until late in his life, that he continued with clandestine activities long after the war. As an explosives expert, his role was to guard the barrels of gunpowder and, when the time was right, light it up. On 4 November the Parliament cellars were searched and Guy Fawkes was found and captured.

Guido von Mengden

The following day, 5 November , Fawkes was questioned. Initially he lied by saying his name was John Johnson. However, after days of torture he confessed and exposed the whole plot. He even gave over the names of all other people involved.

Fawkes was sentenced and on 31 January was taken to the Old Palace Yard in Westminster where he was to be hung, drawn and quartered. To escape the embarrassment of this, it's believed that Fawkes jumped from the gallows, breaking his neck.

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Over four hundred years after the Gunpowder plot, we still remember how Guy Fawkes and his fellow plotters failed to blow up Parliament and kill King James I. Bonfire night is celebrated every year on 5 November. Bonfires, fireworks and sparklers are lit in parks and gardens all over the country. This is supposed to represent Guy Fawkes. All rights reserved. Editors' choice Is Inclusive Growth an Oxymoron?

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