The Library of Congress Veterans History Project Home 
Experiencing War: Stories from the Veterans History Project
Home » Robert M. Walker

"My feeling was to get those ovens shut down." (Audio Interview, 31:18)

   Robert M. Walker
Placeholder Image
War: World War, 1939-1945
Branch: Army
Unit: Assistant G-2, 80th Infantry Division; S-2, 317th Regiment, 80th Infantry Division
Service Location: Pacific; Hawaii; Arizona; Kansas; Maryland; England; France; Germany; Czechoslovakia
Rank: Captain
View Full Description

Robert Walker was in Pearl Harbor shortly after the Japanese attack and landed on Normandy shortly after D-Day. What he didn't miss, however, was the discovery by Allied troops of Buchenwald's concentration camp. The German guards had left only minutes before his arrival, but he saw evidence of torture, corpses stacked in piles, and the camp's crematorium going full blast, with workers still loading bodies. He fired his pistol into the floor to get the workers' attention; almost sixty years later when he visited the camp site, the hole in the floor was still there. The citizens of the nearby town of Weimar claimed they knew about the camp, but Walker found them disingenuous. (Note: The transcript for Walker's interview covers only the first half; the material about Buchenwald is in the second half.)

Interview (Audio)
»Interview Highlights  (1 clip)
»Part 1 | Part 2 
Download: audio(1) | 
Download: audio(2) (126 min.)
More like this
»The War

Home » Robert M. Walker
  The Library of Congress  >> American Folklife Center
  October 26, 2011
  Legal | External Link Disclaimer Need Help?   
Contact Us