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Margo Wölk said some of the women she worked with would cry through their meals because 'they were so afraid' they might die as a result

Margo Wölk said some of the women she worked with would cry through their meals because ‘they were so afraid’ they might die as a result

‘I Was Hitler’s Food Taster’

Eating was a game of Russian roulette for Margo Wölk – because every mouthful of food could have killed her. Although grateful for the bland vegetarian meals she was given, the 25-year-old and her colleagues were not being fed out of generosity.

Ms Wölk was one of 15 women employed at Adolf Hitler’s Prussian headquarters during the Second World War to taste the Nazi leader’s food to ensure it had not been poisoned.
In an interview with Berlin’s RBB television channel, the only surviving meal-tester who is now a 96-year-old widow, recalled how the women would burst into tears after each meal because they were grateful to still be alive.

Because of ‘constant rumors the British were out to poison Hitler’, he never ate meat, and his meals would consist of rice, noodles, peppers, peas and cauliflower.
Ms Wölk said of the experience: ‘Some of the girls started to shed tears as they began eating because they were so afraid. We had to eat it all up. Then we had to wait an hour, and every time we were frightened that we were going to be ill. We used to cry like dogs because we were so glad to have survived.’

Ms Wölk became a food taster by accident after taking refuge at her mother’s Partsch home, which happened to be next door to Hitler’s Wolf’s Lair. She had been bombed out of her Berlin apartment in 1941 – after her husband Karl had been drafted into the army – and was forced by the mayor of the town to take-up the deadly job.
Each day she was picked up by a guard and driven to a school building to test Hitler’s food. Despite her position, Ms Wölk never saw Hitler. She was however, raped by one of his guards.

Ms Wölk recalled an attempt on Hitler’s life on 20 July 1944, when a group of German army officers tried to detonate a bomb inside his lair.

She said: “We were sitting on wooden benches, and suddenly we heard and felt this incredible big bang.

‘We fell off the benches and I heard someone shouting, ”Hitler is dead!” But of course he wasn’t.’
As a result of the assassination attempt, almost 5,000 Germans were executed by the Nazi’s and Ms Wölk was moved to another building, where her job continued.

After being helped by an SS officer, Ms Wölk fled to Berlin in 1944. But the horror of the war didn’t end there for Ms Wölk. Berlin capitulated to the Russian army in 1945, and her life took a turn for the worse.

She told the German television programme: ‘We tried to dress up as old women, but the Russians came for me and the other girls all the same.’

She added: ‘They cut open our dresses and dragged us into a doctor’s flat. We were held there and raped for 14 days. It was hell on earth. The nightmare never goes away.’

Ms Wölk was left unable to bear children. ‘I always wanted a daughter. When I reached 50, I thought, if had a daughter she would be 25 now. But sadly that never happened.’

A British officer helped Ms Wölk recover and she awaited news of her husbands fate. He appeared at her doorstep in 1946, but nothing was the same again.

Having being imprisoned in a war camp, he weighed just 45kgs and was barely recogniseable. Ms Wölk too struggled with nightmares and the pair later separated.
Daily Mail

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