Captain Doyle D. Ream, 868 Field Artillery Bn., 65th Division
Doyle D. Ream was born on December 4, 1921, at Burkemere in Faulk County of
South Dakota. Raised as an Episcopalian, Doyle was a banker before
entering the service in July of 1942.
Service Record: Doyle entered the service and completed basic and infantry
training at Camp Forest in Tennessee; he then completed OCS at Fort
Sill in Oklahoma. He was with field artillery and his original cadre
was the 65th Division. Throughout the war, Ream was a battery
executive whose duty was direct charge of 4 105 MM Howitzers and
approximately 75 men.
Camp Encounter: (told in his own words) We came to Ohrdruf and saw the
warehouse full of bodies--a few survivors that looked almost as bad
off as the dead. The barracks -- no heat. Later we were told that
they made the townspeople come and dig graves for the dead. A memory
that I will never forget besides the sight was the odor.
Awards: I received the Bronze Star, the European Campaign Ribbon (2
Stars) and the Occupation Ribbon.
After the War: I was discharged in December of 1954 because I
stayed in the
reserves after I was released from active duty and went
back to banking
from which I retired. I had no college education. I
married and had one
daughter and now have four grandchildren.
Advice from a WW II Veteran to Today's Youth:
It was an experience. I saw so much misery, many deaths, and
much destruction. It's hard to describe.
Dwight Eisenhower and a party of high ranking U.S. Army officers,
including Generals Bradley, Patton, and Eddy, view the charred remains of
prisoners during an inspection tour of Ohrdruf; photo courtesy of USHMM
April 4, 1945, American soldiers entering Ohrdruf found mass graves
containing thousands of corpses; photo courtesy
Wide World Photo / United States Holocaust Memorial
Museum Photo Archive