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Published on May 29, 2024
At 100, Dachau Liberator Hilbert Margol Fights Holocaust Denial in Dunwoody, GeorgiaSource: Unsplash/ israel palacio

In Dunwoody, Georgia, lives a man who stands as a testament to history's darkest hours and a rallying cry against the poison of denial. Private First Class Hilbert Margol, part of the 42nd Infantry Division, remembers April 29, 1945, as the day he came face to face with the incomprehensible horrors of Dachau Concentration Camp. In a chilling recount of his experience, as reported by WABE. Hilbert, alongside his late twin brother Howard, discovered abhorrent scenes that defy understanding, with “stacks of dead bodies like cordwood."

These harrowing sights continued to underscore Margol's life mission to combat Holocaust denial. With time bridging past to present, the remaining witnesses to World War II's grim legacy are fearlessly countering revisionist narratives. "I hope and pray that everyone who hears my voice, and their offspring, outlive the offspring of the deniers that say the Holocaust never happened," Hilbert Margol told WABE. This veteran's persistent voice plays a crucial role, especially as the number of those who can testify firsthand dwindles.

PFC Margol and his brother Howard began their military careers together, enlisting in an ROTC program at the University of Florida right after the attack on Pearl Harbor. Despite an effort to stay in school, they were called to serve in 1943. Trained separately initially, fate would reunite the brothers on the battlefield in Europe following D-Day. The sights and sounds of war that met them there would shape their resolve for the rest of their lives.

Even after returning home to success in business, the specter of war never fully receded for Margol. "One of the promises I made to myself in combat, that if I was fortunate enough to make it back home, I was going to buy every creature comfort that I could afford," he shared in a statement remembered by WABE. Yet, it's his voice against the denial of the Holocaust that he considers among his most significant pursuits, striving to ensure that the truth of what occurred remains unassailable.

Now, as Hilbert Margol approaches his centennial year, he still stands ready to bear witness to history's grim truths and to confront those who would, to rewrite the past. He carries the memories of Dachau not just as burdens of horrors witnessed, but as catalysts to speak, educate, and safeguard the truth for a world that must never forget.