Liberation of Buchenwald

Ettersberg Hill near Weimar, Germany

With the end of the Battle of the Bulge the company needed a chance to regroup before continuing forward with their march into Germany. While at the camp site there were rumors traveling around about a camp located on the Ettersberg hill near Weimar, Germany. Timuel and his commanding officer hoped into a Jeep and decided to take a ride and see what the rumors were all about. In the region of Ettersberg lay the Buchenwald Concentration Camp, which was one of the largest concentration camps on German Soil. It was established in July of 1937 and served as a forced labor camp for the local factories. Close to 250,000 people of various nationalities passed through Buchenwald between 1938 and 1945, and that the number of deaths that were suffered there was around 56,000. As Tim entered the site it was the smell that took over his senses and then he saw the human beings that looked like walking skeletons. The initial thought that Tim had within Buchenwald was that all of the Germans should be killed for what they had done to these people. As Tim continued to explore the camp his emotions started to calm down and his thoughts went to his ancestors, who had suffered in the time of slavery. Tim knew a small amount of German and decided to ask some of the local survivors at the camp, “How could you let this happen?” Their response was, “Mister it wasn’t us, it was the Fuhrer.” At that moment Timuel decided to make himself a promise that he would spend the rest of his life making the world into a better place. In 1945, Tim was honorably discharged from the military and decided to return home to Chicago to start carrying out the promise he had made to himself at Buchenwald.