Edward John Kerling

Edward John Kerling

Birth
Hessen, Germany
Death 8 Aug 1942 (aged 33)
District of Columbia, District of Columbia, USA
Burial Anacostia, District of Columbia, District of Columbia, USA
Plot Plot 279
Memorial ID 9509647 · View Source
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Edward John Kerling was born in Wiesbaden, Germany on June 12, 1909. He joined the National Socialist Party in 1928. Kerling left Germany later that year settling in New York City. After a time working in a packing house in Manhattan as a shipping clerk, Kerling served as a chauffeur for Eli Culbertson, a bridge expert, in Hicksville, Long Island. On October 31, 1931 he married Marie Sichart. After his marriage Kerling worked as a chauffeur for W. J. Hoggson, a banker in Greenwich, Connecticut. While in Florida, Kerling met Hedwig Engemann, who became his mistress. In 1939 when Germany went to war, Edward Kerling and several friends, including Hermann Neubauer, bought the yacht Lekala. They intended to sail it to Germany. The U.S. Coast Guard, fearing the group might be attempting to supply U-Boats, prohibited the voyage. The boat was sold in Miami. In June 1940, Kerling sailed via passenger ship to Germany. Kerling left his wife and lover behind in the USA. In August, Kerling joined the German Army and was assigned to a listening post in Deauville, France. In April, 1942 he was recruited into the Abwehr where he was assigned to sabotage training at Brandenburg. Kerling was appointed a team leader in Operation Pastorius. Kerling landed on Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida (by U-Boat) in June, 1942. Pastorius was a sabotage mission against the United States during World War Two. After one of the team members from the Long Island group went straight to the FBI, Kerling was arrested in New York City a few days later. He was tried by a military tribunal in July, 1942 and executed on August 8, 1942 in the Washington D.C. district jail by electrocution. Also executed that day were his old friend Hermann Neubauer and teammates Werner Thiel and Herbert Haupt. Two of the Long Island group, Heinrich Heinck and Richard Quirin also died in the electric chair. Attempts by Kerling’s wife to retrieve his remains were denied by the U.S. government. Similar efforts by the lawyer representing Erna Haupt, Herbert’s mother, were also rejected. All six of the German agents were all buried in a government potters field for un-claimed bodies. Kerling’s grave was marked by a wooden board numbered 279. In 1982 a German-American group donated a grave monument.


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  • Created by: Wayne Sharp
  • Added: 23 Sep 2004
  • Find A Grave Memorial 9509647
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Edward John Kerling (12 Jun 1909–8 Aug 1942), Find A Grave Memorial no. 9509647, citing Washington Asylum Potters Field, Anacostia, District of Columbia, District of Columbia, USA ; Maintained by Wayne Sharp (contributor 46615922) .