Ceremony marks 70 years since the Great Escape

AP News
Posted: Mar 24, 2014 12:45 PM

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — British and other airmen have attended a military ceremony marking 70 years since the Great Escape of Allied officers from the Nazi prisoner camp near Zagan, in western Poland.

Marek Lazarz, director of the Stalag Luft III Museum, said Monday the ceremony was held at the place where 76 prisoners of war emerged from a tunnel on March 24, 1944. The 1963 Hollywood movie "The Great Escape," starring Steve McQueen, tells their story.

Two British former prisoners, now in their 90s, joined airmen and ambassadors from Britain, Canada and New Zealand In the observances to their countrymen.

Only three of those who escaped made it home. Fifty others were executed when caught, and the rest were sent to other camps.