Heinz Heydrich-The good Heydrich.

158622865_1463628831

Some name are synonymous with evil Goering and Heydrich would be some of them.But like Herman Goering had a brother who was the opposite of him and rather then killing Jews he helped them. So did Reinhard Heydrich(The Butcher of Prague), he had a younger brother who also saved Jews.

bros

Heinz Heydrich was born in Halle an der Saale to composer Richard Bruno Heydrich and his wife Elisabeth Anna Maria Amalia Krantz. Her father was Eugen Krantz, director of the Dresden Royal Conservatory.The Heydrich family were well-to-do Catholics. The father, Richard Bruno Heydrich, was an opera singer, the founder of a music conservatory in Halle, and a German Nationalist who instilled patriotic ideas in the minds of his children.

brunoheydrich

The Heydrich household was very strict and the children were frequently disciplined. As a youth, Heydrich engaged his older brother, Reinhard Heydrich, in mock fencing duels.

Heinz Heydrich was an Obersturmführer (lieutenant), journalist and publisher of the soldiers’ newspaper, Die Panzerfaust.

panzerfaust2

He was very proud of his Nazi association and his older brother’s position within this unique organisation. He continued his active association with the S.S. until June of 1942.

Early in June, Heinz’s older brother Reinhard died, asassinated by resistence-members in Czechosolvakia. His car was ambushed at a blind corner in a road and he was mortally wounded, dying a few days later in hospital. It was this event that changed everything. Almost overnight, Heinz received a bundle of Reinhard’s personal papers and files…included in these were detailed plans about the “Final Solution”, in which Reinhard had been heavily involved.

https://dirkdeklein.net/2016/06/20/operation-anthropoid-the-assassination-of-reinhard-heydrich/

bundesarchiv_bild_146-1972-039-44_heydrich-attentat

Heinz Heydrich had been given a large packet containing his brother’s files, released from his strongbox at Gestapo Headquarters, 8 Prinz-Albrecht-Strasse, Berlin.

Berlin, Geheimes Staatspolizeihauptamt

Next morning his wife noticed that her husband had sat up all night burning the documents from the package. Heinz, on leave from the front, could not be engaged in conversation, his wife remembered; he seemed to be elsewhere mentally, and like stone. The files in the package were probably Reinhard Heydrich’s personal files, from which Heinz Heydrich understood for the first time in all its enormity the systematic extermination of the Jews, the so-called Final Solution.

heydrich-endlosung

Thereafter, Heinz Heydrich helped many Jews escape by forging identity documents and printing them on Die Panzerfaustpresses.

Realising fully for the first time what he’d signed up for when he joined the S.S., Heinz was horrified. He burnt most of the papers in disgust.

Soon after this event, Heinz began to realise that he was in a truly unique position. Being the brother of a prominent S.S. general (albeit, a dead one), and being the editor of the party newspaper meant that he had a lot of influence. He used this to help as many Jews as possible escape from Germany. As a writer and editor of the party newspaper, Heinz had access to a commercial printing-press. He used this to print fake travel-documents which he signed and forged and stamped, and gave to Jewish families, so that they could escape from occupied Europe to countries of safety.

When in November 1944 an economic commission headed by a State Attorney investigated the editorial staff of Panzerfaust, Heinz Heydrich thought he had been discovered and shot himself in order to protect his family from the Gestapo. Ironically, the attorney knew nothing about the forgeries, and was only trying to find out the reason for shortages in paper supplies. Heinz Heydrich is buried in the Soldatenfriedhof (soldiers cemetery) Riesenburg, according to the Deutsche Dienststelle (WASt).

 

 

Advertisements

August Landmesser- The Defiant Nazi

august-landmesser-no-salute

Most of us will have seen the picture of the Nazi rally where one ‘Nazi’ refused to salute. This man was August Landmesser and he defied the Nazi regime in one more than one way.

Adopted by the Nazi Party in the 1930s, Hitler’s infamous ‘sieg heil’ (meaning ‘hail victory’) salute was mandatory for all German citizens as a demonstration of loyalty to the Führer, his party, and his nation.

August Landmesser (born 24 May 1910; KIA 17 October 1944; confirmed in 1949) was a worker at the Blohm + Voss shipyard inHamburg, Germany, best known for his appearance in a photograph refusing to perform the Nazi salute at the launch of the naval training vessel Horst Wessel on 13 June 1936.

Segelschulschiff "Horst Wessel"

He had run afoul of the Nazi Party over his unlawful relationship with Irma Eckler, a Jewish woman. He was later imprisoned and eventually drafted into military service, where he was killed in action; Eckler was sent to a concentration camp where she was presumably killed.

Landmesser joined the Nazi Party in 1931 and began to work his way up the ranks of what would become the only legal political affiliation in the country.

Two years later, Landmesser fell madly in love with Irma Eckler, a Jewish woman, and proposed marriage to her in 1935.

irma

After his engagement to the Jewish woman was discovered, Landmesser was expelled from the Nazi Party.Landmesser and Eckler decided to file a marriage application in Hamburg, but the union was denied under the newly enacted Nuremberg Laws.

The couple welcomed their first daughter, Ingrid, in October 1935.

august-landmesser-ingrid-portrait

And then on June 13, 1936, Landmesser gave a crossed-arm stance during Hitler’s christening of a new German navy vessel.

salute

The act of defiance stands out amid the throng of Nazi salutes.

In 1937, fed up, Landmesser attempted to flee Nazi Germany to Denmark with his family. But he was detained at the border and charged with ‘dishonouring the race’ or ‘racial infamy’ under the Nuremberg Laws.

A year later, Landmesser was acquitted for a lack of evidence and was instructed to not have a relationship with Eckler.

Refusing to abandon his wife, Landmesser ignored Nazi wishes and was arrested again in 1938 and sentenced to nearly three years in a concentration camp.

He would never see the woman he loved or his child again.

The secret state police also arrested Eckler, who was several months pregnant with the couple’s second daughter.She gave birth to Irene in prison and was sent to an all-women’s concentration camp soon after her delivery.

Eckler was detained by the Gestapo and held at the prison Fuhlsbüttel, where she gave birth to a second daughter, Irene.

august-landmesser-irma-kids

From there she was sent to the Oranienburg concentration camp, the Lichtenburg concentration camp for women, and then the women’s concentration camp at Ravensbrück.

A few letters came from Irma Eckler until January 1942. It is believed that she was taken to the Bernburg Euthanasia Centre in February 1942, where she was among the 14,000 killed; in the course of post-war documentation, in 1949 she was pronounced legally dead, with a date of 28 April 1942.

1024px-bernburg_toetungsgebaeude

 

Meanwhile, Landmesser was discharged from prison on 19 January 1941.He worked as a foreman for the haulage company Püst. The company had a branch at the Heinkel-Werke (factory) in Warnemünde.In February 1944 he was drafted into a penal battalion, the 999th Fort Infantry Battalion. He was declared missing in action, after being killed during fighting in Croatia on 17 October 1944.Like Eckler, he was legally declared dead in 1949.

Their children were initially taken to the city orphanage. Ingrid was later allowed to live with her maternal grandmother while Irene went to the home of foster parents in 1941. Ingrid was also placed with foster parents after her grandmother’s death in 1953.