Corps now ordered the Division to move south, generally using the Czechoslovakian border as its left boundary. The troops moved swiftly, meeting resistance occasionally, disposing of it with relative ease. Marktredwitz was taken, and here were discovered 13 American soldiers, haggard and emaciated as a result of the starvation diet and harsh treatment imposed upon them by their SS captors.
Plans called for an overnight halt at Marktredwitz, but upon learning of additional Americans in a similar plight at Fuchsmühl, one company with tanks and Tank Destroyers formed a Task Force to rescue the Americans there. Sixty-three Americans were found at Fuchsmühl, all so seriously ill as a result of malnutrition that it was necessary to rush them immediately, via ambulance, to the nearest collecting company.
Tirschenreuth, Flossenberg, and Weiden were captured, names familiar to members of the Division who were to comprise the occupation forces at the conclusion of the war. At Flossenberg, men of the 90th learned that propaganda and truth are sometimes the same. It was here that they saw with their own eyes a vivid example of the cruelties of which the enemy was capable.
Flossenberg, one of the most infamous concentration camps in all Germany, was the first encountered by the 90th. Bodies of former inmates were stacked grotesquely like cords of wood.
The ovens used for disposing of the bodies were on display. More than 1,100 inmates, living under indescribably hard conditions, were liberated by troops of the 90th, to whom the nature of the enemy was now revealed fully and graphically. With the memories of Flossenberg etched indelibly in their brains, they moved grimly on.