Falklands (Malvinas) war vet wants to recover helmet that saved his life. La Nación LN
The helmet that saved his life during the Falklands war is being sold online for thirteen thousand dollars We are going to talk to Jorge “Beto” Altieri, who will tell us his story. He is a Falkland war vet and wants to recover his helmet, Welcome Jorge, a pleasure to have you here Good afternoon, thank you for the invitation and for letting me participate in your program Well, here we are seeing images of your helmet, and I would like to know when was the first moment that you realized that it had been recovered It’s been four year. This is the second auction that is being held for it. I participated in the first one to try to recover it but at the last minute an english gentleman not a war vet himself, made his £800 offer and won it, being to late for us to make a counteroffer. Some time later, “Quique”, a friend from Tierra del Fuego, gave me a hand and contacted this person and some english officers they went to see it, but this gentleman refused to sell it. Are we are talking about someone that is a war item collector? Yes, yes, a war collector. And this object caught his interest. Even more, realizing that this helmet has my history to it. Tell us about it. On june 11, 1982, the battle of Mount Longdon began. I was assigned to the Maipú Infantry Company, 7th regiment, first section. We defended our positions the best we could until we could hold it no more. Then we move to a different position when suddenly a non-commissioned officer, surnamed Ron, of the 10th armored exploration squadron appeared, and ask us who knew how to get “up there”. Fernandez Reto and myself offered as volunteers and climb up the mount one more time. We reached this point where they (the english soldiers) realized our position, call it on the radio, and the mortar shells started falling on us. On of this shells caught the first sergeant -who was in front of us- in the chest and kill him. It struck me in the head while I was firing, and the other “kid” in his legs. (the shrapnel) hit me in the forehead and I fell to the floor, feeling the blood running and the freezing cold Once the English left the zone, my friends came looking for my and took me to the town where my helmet was thrown away, somewhere You where taking to the hospital? To the hospital of Puerto Argentino (Port Stanley), yes. When the 14 of June ceasefire arrived, an english soldier took the helmet a a souvenir. It happened that this soldier, of the 3rd Parachute Regiment, was one of those that had been fighting against us at Mount Longdon. He took it home. When he passed away, his children opted to sell it. That was the occasion I tried to purchase it. That was the first auction (Interviewer) The first auction, yes. In fact, the helmet has the holes of the shrapnel that hit you. Sure, the shrapnel, yes. And you can see “Altieri” written on it. With a pen. You wrote that? Yes. We all conscripts tagged our possessions for them not to be stolen. I wrote Altieri “Beto” on it. You can see it a little bit there. You can see it clearly, yes. (Interviewer) Is that what you saw and help you recognize it? Sure. When an Argentinian lad told me about it I replied that it could not be possible, that my helmet was left behind in that town. That there where many broken helmets. But when he told me that it had my name on it, and I saw the pictures, I said “this is my helmet”, “this is my helmet”. Now, are there other cases where english soldiers, combatants, had contacted argentinian soldiers in order to return their possesions?