Next week, College of the Ozarks student Grace Helms, of Camdenton, along with 16 other College of the Ozarks students, will accompany four WWII veteran liberators and three Holocaust survivors to Dachau, Mauthausen-Gusen, Gunskirchen and Auschwitz in an educational trip unlike any other.


Next week, College of the Ozarks student Grace Helms, of Camdenton, along with 16 other College of the Ozarks students, will accompany four WWII veteran liberators and three Holocaust survivors to Dachau, Mauthausen-Gusen, Gunskirchen and Auschwitz in an educational trip unlike any other.  The students will witness the veterans and Holocaust survivors reunite to visit places they haven’t seen in decades.

 They will hear stories, first-hand, from the survivors at the prison sites where they once were held captive.  They will learn from Veteran Mason “Mickey” Dorsey about the moment his unit discovered Gunskirchen only to find the emaciated prisoners imprisoned and left for dead by retreating Germans.  The students, veterans and survivors will have the opportunity to ride in what used to be Hitler’s brass elevator at Berchtesgaden and will share many other powerful moments learning from each other during the trip.

 Hopefully this trip will provide a chance for veterans and survivors to find closure to one of the most difficult times of their lives.  The students will learn what no history book can teach them; they will, no doubt, be forever changed from this experience.

 In 2009, College of the Ozarks (a small work college in southwest Missouri) began sending students to accompany WWII Veterans to learn about history and sacrifice from the men who made it, so that their stories do not die with them. Since then, the College has sent several groups to the visit battle sites in the European and Pacific theatres.  However, this is the first time for College of the Ozarks (or any college for that matter) to send students with veterans and Holocaust survivors. 

During the trip May 31-June 10, the students will journal and post pictures daily on a blog.  Visit http://patriotictravel.blogspot.com to see their amazing journey unfold.