The last Soviet soldier who released Auschwitz died at the age of 98

Berlin-David Dashman, the last surviving Soviet soldier involved in the liberation of the Auschwitz Nazi extermination camp, has died. He was 98 years old.

The Jewish community in Munich and Upper Bavaria announced on Sunday that Dashman died in a hospital in Munich on Saturday.

“It’s all a loss to be handed down as a witness of history, but it’s especially painful to say goodbye to David Dashman,” said Charlotte Nobrock, a former chairman of the German Central Council of Jews. It was. “Dashman was at the forefront when the national socialist murder mechanism was destroyed.”


He admitted that he and his associates were not immediately aware of what had happened in Auschwitz.

“The skeleton is everywhere,” he recalled in an interview with the Munich newspaper, the South German newspaper, in 2015. “They staggered out of the barracks and lay in the dead. Terrible. We threw all the cans and drove immediately to hunt fascists.”

Between 1940 and 1945, more than a million people were transferred from all over Europe, including the Jews killed by the Nazis in Auschwitz-Birkenau.

Dashman previously participated in some of World War II’s bloodiest military clashes, including the Battle of Stalingrad and Kursk. He was seriously injured three times, but survived the war with only one of the 69 soldiers in the 12,000 division.

His father, a former army surgeon, was imprisoned during that time and subsequently died in a Soviet punishment camp after being the victim of the Great Purge of Joseph Stalin.

After the war, Dashman helped train the Soviet Union women’s fencing national team for 40 years and witnessed an attack on the Israeli team by eight Palestinian terrorists at the 1972 Munich Olympics. German police officer.

Dashman then visited the school and told the students about the horrors of war and the Holocaust. He also regularly paid off military medals to participate in veterans’ gatherings.

“Dashman was the legendary coach of fencing and the last living liberator of Auschwitz concentration camp,” the International Olympic Committee (IOC) said in a statement.

In honor of Dashman, IOC President Thomas Bach said he was given “friendship and advice” by a veteran coach in 1970 as a young fencing player in West Germany at the time. He is Jewish. “

In a statement, Bach said, “This is a very deep human gesture and will never be forgotten.

According to the IOC, Dashman trained some of the most successful Fencers in the Soviet Union, including Valentina Sidorova, and continued her lessons in her 90s.

The details of the funeral arrangements were not immediately known. Dushman’s wife Zoja died a few years ago.

Posted on