Eli Heimberg, from Dartmouth, Massachusetts, entered the army in August, 1943. Initially, he was with a heavy weapons company of the 42nd Infantry division.

 “We entered Dachau, we rode over a moat. As we were entering, it was with apprehension and a little agitation, inside agitation, wondering what we were going to see. And as we entered, we saw mounds of clothing, fifteen feet high. (Interviewer: What was the first thing you saw?) There was no gate as we entered, we went over the moat. To our left, I believe, were railroad cars on a siding. To our front slightly to the right were these mounds of clothing. And that really hit me hard because I thought to myself there were people in these suits, sweaters. Where are they and what happened to them? And at that moment, the horror struck me before I even saw the real horror. After that, we saw the cars along the railroad siding with some of the bodies. One man was sitting as if he was trying to get out. His eyes wide open. He had died. The stare was terrible because he looked right in your eye as if to say, “why, why”. It was a moment that was numbing. We were very disturbed, we saw an SS guard lying on the ground who was killed probably by the inmates. The Nazis called these camps extermination camps but the terrible thing is when you use the word extermination, what do you think of? You exterminate vermin. It’s a word that should never be used in the treatment of human beings.”