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April 29, 2010

Who entered Dachau first on April 29, 1945?

Filed under: Dachau, Germany, World War II — Tags: , , , — furtherglory @ 7:34 pm

Several American soldiers claim to have been the first person to enter the Dachau concentration camp on April 29, 1945. Private First Class John Degro, the lead scout of I Company, 3rd BN, 157th Infantry, 45th Division, says that he was the first American soldier to enter the camp. Col. Howard Buechner, a 45th Division Medical Corps officer, quoted Degro in his book “Dachau, the Hour of the Avenger”:

“As lead scout, I shot the lock off the gate and entered the compound. There were 32,000 inmates, screaming, between hugging and kissing us. The stench was unbearable. We backed out the gate, let a few inmates out and gave them weapons. We cleaned out the guard towers, took knapsacks off of the dead SS and threw them over the barbed wire into the compound.” (more…)