I ran outside the barn. The night was inky black. I didn't see the
guards, who had disappeared from the barn floor. I heard talking,
but not the guttural accents of the Germans. I knew a little
English, and I'd heard it quite a few times...I saw tanks the size
I walked toward the sounds, which were perhaps twenty-five feet
away, not even trying to conceal myself. I figured even if it were
the Germans, I had nothing to lose. I was cold and wet, and I didn't
care anymore. But I also felt in my gut that it was somebody else.
It was the Americans.
As soon as I stepped onto the highway, the soldiers covered their
eyes and cried out, 'Oh my God, oh my God.' They kept marching, but
they had food in their pockets and bags, and they held it out to me,
pleading, 'Here, take it; put it into your pockets...'
Prisoners started dribbling out of the barns--first in ones and
twos, then threes and fours, and then huge swarms of frail and
hobbling human beings. They limped over to the Americans.
'Americans, Americans, Americans. We're liberated. My God, we're
liberated,' they screamed.
We all started kissing each other and jumping up and down, the
closest to a full-fledged jig our weakened bodies would allow us..."