World War II

of the Greater Quad City Area


BARTON,  William


CLEVE, Carl R.

CORBIN, Ricard S.


HARTZ, Henry

HUGGINS, Harold H.

JENS, Wayne

JOHNSON, Pershing

LEWIS, Wilbur C.

McCORMICK, Harold E. (Pete)


RUDDY, Douglas


WELTY, Roger

WOLFE, Warren



Cordova, Illinois


This note is in reply to your article in the QC Times concerning liberators of the Holocaust.  My friend Warren Wolfe was one
of the very first to go into Dachau.  He was an MP during the war and at Dachau; it was his job to protect the place so that
Nazis couldn't destroy the evidence. I told him about your project and he said I could give out his name and that he would be
willing to talk to you about his experiences.  What you're doing is a great idea.  Good luck with this project.



Q:  How were you involved in the War?  What were you doing in Europe?
A:  I worked with the Army here.  Then I was with the Military Police attached to several individuals. I was with Patton's Third
Army, etc..  I landed in France 35 days after D-Day, and then proceeded with Patton's Army.  I was with an Infantry Division
when we entered the camps.  I live in Cordova now.  I'm originally from

Q:  How did you experience the Holocaust?
A:  I was at Dachau and Buchenwald.  The troops were told little purposely.  They weren't told where they were going, so if they
were captured they didn't know anything.  We got to Dachau, and they were still burning bodies.  We saw dead German
soldiers.  I'm glad we didn't see who shot them or we would have had to arrest the GIs.  I saw the ring fingers of the Germans
were gone.  There were several piles of clothes.  They continued to burn bodies when we got there.  There were several
hundred bodies there still.  I saw only one female body, but I knew women were gassed as well.  I saw the train and the dead
bodies.  What got me was the shape of the bodies...they were just skin and bone.  Ex-prisoners were all around. 
    We were flagged down by a prisoner at one time.  He got in the jeep and he told where an SS soldier was in town.  We just
missed him...he had just left his bed. 
    In Germany we put up information stations where we posted photos of Dachau.  I stood and listened to the comments as
people looked at the photographs.  Most of the people said they didn't believe what they saw.  They believed they were
mannequins.  That demonstrates the depths that human beings can sink to.  Here's a guy , nice house, nice family in town, and
he goes to work and kills people.  It's almost unbelievable!  I can see why Germans deny it happened!                                                                                                                       

Q:  Were you at any other camps?
A:  No.  The purpose of us being there was to see that nothing was disturbed.  Delegates of the U.S. Congress toured the
place later.  They wanted to see the camp as it was and to see that evidence was not destroyed.  There was no attempt to do
so.  Lots of guards were dead.

Q:  In terms of war criminals, escorting them to trials, what was involved?
A:  We didn't speak the language.  We were told not to get friendly with the soldiers.  I didn't do it, but others were given rifles
and bayonets and acted like they were going to kill them, to get information from them.  Officers who escorted them to the war
trials had no contact with the prisoners.  One time, I was in took a day to get there and back transporting
prisoners...were were in a jeep and we got lost.  The German officer we were transporting helped us find the town.  We weren't
aware he could understand us.  I don't know how many were involved in the trials. 

Q:  Do you wonder how they could be involved in this and then go home?
A:  I don't know if they were just obeying orders.  I don't know the specific crimes they were involved in. 

Q:  When you went back to your unit, how did you describe things to your own comrades?  How did they react?
A:  They went to see for themselves.  They couldn't believe it.  They saw the cattle cars.  They were just 21 years old.  They just
couldn't believe it.  They'd just say that any officer with an SS uniform would kill his own mother.  He was the worst person on
earth.  He only cared for himself.  He'd fight to the end.

Q:  Think about people like me, who were born long after the war was over.  What message do you as GIs who did
what you did want to leave with me and people younger than me?
A:  Number one, You've got to have faith in God that sooner or later all will work out.  And, number two, you've got to be
prepared.  You've got to teach our young people about the Holocaust, as a example of what can happen.  The Holocaust can
be the result of prejudice.  We've got to teach our kids not to be prejudiced.  It's very important to teach them not to be
prejudiced...most starts in the home.