|Happier Days: A Polish Boy Scout|
|Idealized portrait of the prisoner|
Typhus struck the camp in 1944. Stephan cared for the ill and dying as best he could until he too contracted the disease. Soon, it was compounded with pneumonia. He died on February 22, 1945, about two months before the liberation of the camp. American troops found about 32,000 prisoners alive at the camp. The troops, contrary to the Geneva Convention, shot more than 500 SS guards as they surrendered, and armed prisoners, allowing them to bayonet and behead forty more SS men. It may be a blessing that Stephan did not survive to see this brutal retribution.