Open Railroad Car to Buchenwald, March 1945
8. Open Freight Cars
On the final leg of this journey, Abe and the other surviving prisoners are given a three-day ration of bread and potatoes. On the fourth day of this march, they are forced to board open freight cars at a railroad station for two more days of travel. They are given no additional food. Fortunately, Abe has conserved his bread, just in case. Even though it is now March, there is still snow falling and more prisoners die from starvation and exposure. Only about 200 of the original 2000 prisoners who left Auschwitz survive the journey. After two days in the open train car, these last few prisoners arrive at Buchenwald Concentration Camp, near Weimar, Germany. Their feet are so swollen from frostbite that many of them can’t even get their shoes on. They have to march barefoot in the snow through the gates of Buchenwald.