Albrecht Selig transferred into the 984. GR around August of 1944 when his motorized trupp was completely destroyed. Never one to make much noise or cause much trouble, Selig acted as something of a wallflower in the otherwise boisterous atmosphere of Erste Gruppe. He would often generously share his rations or the gifts he was sent from home with the other men in his squad- though most of them did not even know his first name. They all just referred to him as "Selig".
Selig's gentle demeanor slowly morphed into an apathetic grind, as the days grew shorter in the brisk German Autumn. As frost bit the earth, one could feel it creep into the corners of Albrecht's mind. His squadmates could hear his night terrors, see the blank look in his eyes as he battled his own psyche in the day to day struggle for survival. He did not fear the enemy's burst, nor did he fear his own death. He had snapped, as many would say- seen to many tree bursts to flinch anymore- felt the ground shake too many times. His eyes lacked the gentle sincerity that they had once borne. It had been weeks since anyone had heard Selig speak.
As snowflakes fell on an eerily silent New Years' morning, 1945, Selig sit awake in his slit trench while a man he had only met hours before lay sleeping at his feet. Albrecht smiled to himself, and lay his own blanket over the man. Striking up a damp cigarette, Selig stared deeply into the rows of old growth spruce, his new acquaintance peacefully snoring below the pine bough roof of their slit trench. For a moment, the war went away. Selig took a deep breath of the sharp winter air and laughed for a moment- "I can't die in a place so beautiful", he exclaimed, which woke the man asleep in the trench. "Du bist ficken verrückt", he barked in response. Selig laughed out loud as he took another draw from his now dwindling cigarette. Before he could respond, 81mm mortar fire peppered their position. Rather than take cover, Albrecht sat up, laughing.
Albrecht Selig died that day. A fist-sized piece of shrapnel buried itself in his windpipe. Unteroffizier Bodo Fehrman hurriedly picked up the fallen man's soldbuch and erkennungsmarke, and promised the dead man that he'd return to bury him once the barrage was over. Fehrmann was killed later that day and never had chance to make good on his word.
Eventually, the barrage did come to a stop, and German troops once again took up positions in the same slit trench that was shared by Albrecht and the man he never came to know.
Selig's identification was lost with Fehrmann, his remains could not be identified. He was given a simple burial and laid to rest under a small, hastily constructed cross, his grave marked only by the words "Ich Hatt Einen Kameraden".