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Oral history interview with Dorothy Maroon

Oral History | RG Number: RG-50.344.0004

Some video files begin with 10-60 seconds of color bars.

Dorothy Maroon, born in Kingston, New York in 1921, describes how her parents did not want her to be a nurse; how she did her training at Metropolitan Hospital in New York City; how she had to convince her parents to let her join the service; joining the army in August 1944; going to Europe with the 131st Evacuation Hospital, which consisted of 40 nurses, 40 doctors, and numerous enlisted men; being attached to the 8th Army, 15th Army, and the 3rd Army; the role of the enlisted men to the unit; working in some of the general hospitals in England, where they cared for U.S. service men; crossing the channel and dealing with the depth charges; being in Germany on V-E Day; being given the choice to go to the concentration camp and how all of her unit agreed to go; conditions at Gusen concentration camp; providing the survivors with pills, food, and plasma; how after the patients were all gone, the barracks were burned; how she worked mainly with the male patients and was unable to communicate with most of them; not having much physical contact with the patients because of the diseases; how the unit’s soldiers made Austrian civilians come to the camp and help; being sent back to the U.S. and being home in Kingston on V-J Day; being reassigned to Texas and getting out shortly after; getting her bachelor’s degree and working with her brothers, who were doctors; teaching practical nursing; the impact of her experience on her life; hearing stories about how the camp inmates killed a commander after liberation; staying in the SS troop barracks; going to the church one night in Linz, Austria; and how the nurses in her unit have kept in touch over the years and how they can account for 17 still living.

Dorothy Maroon
Neenah Ellis
1995 July 15  (interview)
1 sound cassette (90 min.).