At 17-years old, Seymour Kaplan enlisted in the American Army and left Brooklyn to fight against Nazi Germany. He became a machine gunner with the 692nd Tank Destroyer Battalion attached to the 42nd Infantry Division. He was one of the first American soldiers to enter the Dachau concentration camp in April 1945. As a Yiddish speaker, Mr. Kaplan served as a translator for the camp Survivors. The shock of what he witnessed traumatized him for the rest of his life. When he returned home to New York, he established a garment manufacturing company, eventually retired, and then began a second career as a teacher. He is a mental health advocate and has been honored by the National Alliance on Mental Illness.
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