Everything You Never Knew You Wanted to Know About Berlin
According to the booklet “Berlin in Zahlen” published in 1949 the number of suicides committed in Berlin in late April and early May 1945, when the Soviet Army entered the city, amounted to 7,057.
The unofficial number, lowered by the fact that hardly anyone had time or opportunity to count the victims and further reduced by intentional misinformation (suicide was not only a sin but also a clear reason for a life insurance company to refuse issuing the payment), was much bigger.
Magda Goebbels and her husband were not the only parents to kill their own children. However, most of the mothers and fathers did so not to spare them the life without the Nazi world and the “Führer” (the reason Magda Goebbels named in the last letter to her older son, Harald Quandt, delivered by Hanna Reitsch after she left the city on April 28th) but because they feared they would be murdered by the winners from the East anyway.
Many of those who chose to kill themselves died completely alone. Like the woman found lying surrounded by her few belongings at Tempelhofer Ufer in Berlin-Kreuzberg.
On April 30th the man who unleashed the dogs of war went the same way. The war itself was almost over but those dogs were not done biting yet.