David Dushman, last surviving Auschwitz liberator, dies

Read the Story

Show Top Comments

How strange it is. Growing up, war vets were just old guys. Now they’re 100 and will soon be all gone.


His life is actually a really interesting story. Born to a Jewish father in Danzig shortly after it became the free city, but with a German population, later on becoming a Russian soldier fighting against the German aggressor, liberating Auschwitz, then becoming a fencing trainer and participating in several Olympics. He died in his later hometown of Munich, the city where arguably Auschwitz took its beginning by providing Hitler with his first followers. A real life of the twentieth century. Rest in peace.


A hero. Rest In Peace.


> On January 27, 1945, **he used his T-34 Soviet tank to mow down the electric fence of Auschwitz in Nazi-occupied Poland, helping to set prisoners in the death camp free.** > “We hardly knew anything about Auschwitz,” he said, recounting that day in an interview in 2015 with Sueddeutsche daily. > But he saw “skeletons everywhere.” > “They staggered out of the barracks, sat and lay among the dead. Terrible. We threw them all our canned food and immediately went on to hunt down the fascists,” he said. > Only after the end of the war did he learn about the scale of the atrocities in the camp. A legend and an inspiration. R.I.P


> Dushman, a Red Army soldier who later became an international fencer, died yesterday, said the International Olympic Committee in a brief statement. Damn. A hero and a professional athlete.