T-Sgt. Melvin L. Clemons, Medical Detachment, 9th Air Corps.


City soldier saw horrors of one German prison camp

Tulsa, OK

The following was printed in the Stillwater Newspress, Stillwater, Okla., under the headline above.
Clipping is crumbling, exact date not available.

(EDITOR'S NOTE: T-Sgt. Melvin L. Clemons, medical detachment, 9th air corps, is now in Fitzler, Germany, it has been learned by his wife, the former Rachel Demaree. Sergeant Clemons, overseas more than 15 months, writes of the Buchenwald prison camp and other sights he has seen. Mrs. Clemons and their young son live at 112 North Main street.)

I haven't written for three or four days, but I have a legitimate excuse as I have been gone for a couple of days. One of our fliers crashed on a training flight and three of us took his body back to Holland. They are taking all American and Allied dead out of Germany.
Even the ones that have been already buried. They say they are not going to leave an Allied person of any kind on German soil.
We had a pretty good trip and kinda made it a sight-seeing trip, especially coming back. While we were there, though, they were bringing in bodies from a German camp called Buchenwald, you have probably read about it in the papers.
They were really awful-looking, and they said they had just picked them out of one small pile. The bodies were nothing but skin and bones, and on some of them the flesh had almost completely rotted off and others were practically eaten up with maggots. It was the most awful and worst smelling sight I've ever seen in my life, and I have seen some pretty rough ones before.
Some of the bodies had arms or legs or other parts of their body cut off. Most of them were cases that had been starved to death though.
We came back through the big Ruhr district. That is the biggest industrial district in Germany. It was just practically beaten flat to the ground. There are five or six pretty large cities that their outskirts nearly touch each other and they were almost completely wrecked. I never saw a single house in the whole district that was completely untouched.
I want to visit one of the German horror camps but as yet I haven't had the opportunity. I think most of the bodies have been removed but I would like to see the camps themselves.

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