On April 15th, 1945, shortly before the end of the Second World War, the Nazi concentration camp at Belsen was liberated by the advancing British Army. It was subsequently established that some 70,000 camp inmates died, or were killed, here over the course of the war, 14,000 of them in the days and weeks after the liberation. Most of the dead were Jews from all over occupied Europe, including, famously, the diarist Anne Frank, and her sister Margot, from Amsterdam in the Netherlands. Note, though, that many Russian Prisoners-Of-War also died in Belsen (which had been used as a P.O.W. camp until 1943).
On April 21st, 1945, a team from the Friends [Quakers] Relief Service arrived to help clear the camp, to comfort the many dying inmates, and to care as best they could for the surviving ones.
My uncle, Eryl Hall Williams, was among them. …
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