Registration Nr.:    08088

Birthday:    09.11.1930, in Bonn (DE)

Father:    Jacques MATTERN

Mother:    Cathérine MEISTER

Service entry:    10.03.1949

Contingent:    2nd 

Rank:    Soldat de 2e Classe

Alfred was conscripted on 10 March 1949. First, he was attached to the medical staff of the Corps de la Garde before joining the second contingent on 4  February 1952. Besides his status as a soldier, Alfred was also known for his talents as a magician, which he regularly displayed on stage. His nickname “Rex”, initially his stage name, stuck to him for the rest of the Korean deployment. In 1952, he published a column in the Luxembourgish newspaper Lëtzebuerger Journal describing the soldiers’ wartime experiences in Korea. Focussing on the feelings of fear, courage, determination and homesickness, Alfred also highlighted valuable aspects of a soldier’s life such as camaraderie and brotherhood.

Furthermore, he wrote the so-called “Korea Song”, using the melody of the famous British WWII-song “We are going to hang out the washing on the Siegfried Line”. From composer over magician to writer, it is safe to say that Alfred was a talented artist in a wide spectrum of fields.

Following his return from the Korean battlefield, Alfred founded his own dancing group, having several gigs in theaters in Luxembourg. A few years later, Alfred decided to move to Switzerland, where he met his future wife.

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