Page 8 of 8  [ 8 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1 ... 4, 5, 6, 7, 8
User avatar
PostPosted: Mon Oct 4, '10, 7:04 pm

At that time, Commander Histlenheimer was already told of the odd behavior of the doctor (someone told the superiors the doctor was locked with a patient, crying the whole day), so someone at the concentration camp left a telegram to him, with the words:

Dr Braudenhoff, report to me immediately

Commander Histlenheimer

He didn’t care. He put the Stella’s body in a special box, a kind of coffin. At that time, the sixteen sub humans promised by Histlenheimer had already arrived. They were sixteen Jews that would be gassed, but were sent to experiments instead. Dr. Braudenhoff became mad and gathered everything he had of any value, some amount of food and some medicine. His first decision was to take an injection of poison, but he decided to do something before. He couldn’t stand the fact of killing Stella, so he wanted to die, but first he would revenge himself.

So in the dawn of the second day after Stella’s death, he took a transport truck left open, parked it near the hospital and released the 16 subjects. He told them to "be quiet to not die". There were some men who could understand German, so they spread the message. He put the Jews in the rear of the truck, Stella’s coffin beside him. He ran away. Before this he left an envelope to Histlenheimer with the report of Stella’s case and the report of the other sixteen Jews. He wrote that all of them died from heart attack, even the children. And he ran away from the camp, as the sleepy and drunk guards didn’t inspect the truck, since he was considered an officer with considerable powers inside the camp and they were unaware of the criminal status of the doctor among the SS officers.

Histlenheimer arrived two days later and ordered people to force the medical center door which was still locked. It wasn’t a great surprise when he saw that the doctor had disappeared. He was expecting something like that. He took the envelope and started to read the reports. When he read some of them and saw that he wrote that children have died of heart attack, he gave the told the S.S. officers:

"Officer, Dr. Braudenhoff disappeared."
"How can he disappear?", asked one officer.
"I don’t know. But I know that he… " Histlenheimer hesitated. He would say that the doctor had fled with the Jews. But he decided to not say that. "…must be found."
"I will communicate my superiors. You, members from Wehrmacht, area always messing up something..."

Histlenheimer was angry with Dr. Braudenhoff, but after a few days of searching, the doctor wasn’t found. Histlenheimer so thought about his old friend "I knew he wasn’t the person to do that. Poor boy…"

Eventually, Dr. Braudenhoff managed to reach near Switzerland frontier. Many days hiding from German officers, driving through irregular terrains and luckily he wasn't captured. He gave all the food he had stolen to the Jews and left them somewhere into the Black Forest, near the border of the country. From there, they could try to cross the border and reach Switzerland in safety. Because Switzerland was a neutral country at the war, the Jews would be safe. Dr. Braudenhoff talked to the two men that understood German, gave them the directions and gave everything he had valuable to them: his golden watch, all his money and some clothes among other things. He gave some chocolates he had to the three children. While doing that, he dropped a photograph he had found among Stella’s belongings. It was a photograph of her months before her imprisonment. She was so beautiful in that photograph that the doctor used to spend hours looking to the photo. Luckily he recovered the photo before the children could see. What happened is that nobody knew about his (and hers) tragic fate and the Jews thanked him very much. They asked if he would go to Switzerland with them, but crying, Dr. Braudenhoff refused:

"You are a good man. You will be free there.", said an old German Jew.
"No. Sorry, but I don’t deserve. Go you all. I don’t deserve. I don’t want…" answered the doctor crying.

Then an 8-year-boy who received lots of candies, took pity on the man which was their savior and embraced him. Dr. Braudenhoff spent some time caressing his head. He was under great emotion, because he learned compassion and love. He didn’t know, but the boy was in fact David, Stella’s brother.

The group of Jews managed to reach Switzerland in safety. David went to many places and after some time moved to Brazil. He spent most of his life there. He always searched his sister, but never found her; neither found records of her death or situation. Nothing in the Yad Vachem could be found. He used to lament "If they had not separated her from me, she would meet that good doctor and she would be here with me". He didn’t know that Stella knew the good doctor and died from his hands. Her improvised grave was discovered only forty years after the end of the war. The information reached David’s ears. At least he knew what happened to her, but the fact that she had an individual grave in a remote part of the Black Forest made him wonder what really happened to her, but he will never know.

In fact Dr. Braudenhoff suffered more than he deserved. His surgery should have been that bad and caused the death of the girl in normal circumstances. If the same surgery was made in another person, the person had good chances to survive. But the fact is that if she wasn’t operated, she wouldn’t die. So the doctor lived the rest of his life thinking in Stella and what he had done to her.

He buried her corpse somewhere in the woods and improvised a simple tombstone, where he has carved her name, her birth and death dates, along with one sentence, that would be her epitaph: “An angel that returned to Lord’s side”.

Then he left and wasn’t seen anymore. Most probably he was captured by German officers and executed, or he was murdered as one of the millions German civilian victims of the war. There are some stories of a kind German doctor who went to India to treat poor people for free. They say the man was kind to the patients, but locked himself in his office when he was not working and stayed the whole day looking to a photograph of a blonde girl. But there is no evidence that could link this rumored doctor to Dr. Braudenhoff, so, though people may feel sorry for Dr. Braudenhoff and wish he had a future like that, it is very unlikely this story was true and, even so, it is unlikely it was him.

Commander Histlenheimer only opened the medical report written by Dr. Braudenhoff for Stella in late April, 1945. The war was about to end. He read the document and tears filled his eyes. He missed the long time friend. He regretted to have ordered him to do what he had done. He admitted: "I think Wilfred was right. Poor boy, suffered more than a Musselman (expression used to designate people in the concentration camp who were about to die of starving). I hope he is well now." And he locked the report again. Commander Histlenheimer was captured by the American forces few days latter. As he was a High Commander of the Wehrmacht, the German army, but he wasn't (at least officially) a SS or, Gestapo member, he was arrested for some months and then released. He always regretted not having destroyed Dr. Braudenhoff´s report. He didn’t want that Braudenhoff´s name was associated with the third Reich atrocities, since Braudenhoff was a good man and didn’t deserve to be recognized as an evil doctor.

Nowadays the report may be among the piles of wartime documents still undisclosed, if it isn’t destroyed. If someday the report is found, then people can read his words about Stella:

Medical Report. Patient n ######. Name: Stella R.
Day xxv –The patient is healthy and no anomalies were detected.
Day xxvi – The patient was operated today. The life signals are ok. Temperature: 36,9 ºC, blood pressure: 110mmhg 77mmhg, 67bpm. Complains about pain. Further investigation to be done.
Day xxviii – I tried to save her life, but I wasn´t capable because of the damage in her veins. Her condition is worsening and today I realize and I am a murderer. I have taken the life of an Angel. I have never known such a lovely person, but she will die from my hands.
Day xxix – I have no more hopes that she will survive. She was so perfect that she forgives me and has compassion to me. I am a monster. We are all monsters. This nation is doomed.
Day xxx 2h32min – The Angel passed away. Now she must be beside God. Me, I am a monster and will go to hell, like all of us who don’t respect our brothers, our friends and our angels. At least I learned a lesson: all the human beings and life forms deserve all the respect. They are in this world to love and be loved. No one is better than the other, except by love and compassion. People who really know what is to love are angels sent by God. Stella was the greatest angel. Rest in Peace, my Angel, my love. I did what I should never have done and I’ll never be happy again without you, my dear Stella.

Dr. Wilfred Braudenhoff
 Page 8 of 8  [ 8 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1 ... 4, 5, 6, 7, 8

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests

Display posts from previous:
Sort by  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Jump to: