The son of a German officer whose men killed a French captain in hand-to-hand fighting in the First World War has traced the relatives of the dead man nearly 100 years later. A yellowing troop newspaper led the son of Johannes Richter to the family of Captain André Vacquier who died in 1918 in the Vosges region of France.

Helmut Richter, 78, is proud to have discovered and befriended the family of the man his father met in combat, he told Germany's Der Spiegel magazine this week. The newspaper article was among the possessions of his father. A military correspondent described how Lieutenant Richter's platoon came across a French outpost in a wood in southern Alsace in the summer of 1918.

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