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Oral history interview with Nino deProphetis

Oral History | Accession Number: 1997.A.0441.33 | RG Number: RG-50.462.0033

Nino deProphetis describes serving with the US Army in Europe from November 1944 to December 1945; being the commanding officer of the 81st Armored Medical Battalion, part of the 11th Armored Division of General Patton’s Third Army; leading a contingent of 30 men to Mauthausen concentration camp after the Nazis had left in April 1945; his entry into the camp and seeing the bodies of thousands of inmates; seeing two gas chambers; how his unit was only equipped to treat battle casualties and was quickly reinforced with troops that brought an abundance of food; the subsequent deaths of surviving prisoners by overfeeding; the terrible malnutrition and gastrointestinal disease of most prisoners; the immediate disposal of dead bodies into a trench; General Patton’s orders for local citizens to exhume the bodies of former inmates and rebury them in individual graves; supervising the evacuation of patients for the following two weeks until he was transferred to the Gmunden area, near Salzburg; being placed in charge, as Burgermeister, of Attersee; and remaining with the Army of Occupation for six months, in charge of all battalion vehicles until his return to the US.

Interviewee
Nino deProphetis
Date
1987 November 06  (interview)
Language
English
Extent
1 sound cassette (60 min.).
Credit Line
The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, acquired from the Gratz College Hebrew Education Society
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Record last modified: 2018-01-22 10:48:53
This page: https://collections.ushmm.org/search/catalog/irn508653