Lot 140

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OTTO SKORZENY (1908 - 1975) Nazi officer and Hitler's chief and favorite commando, he made a daring mountain-top rescue of Mussolini, placed english-speaking soldier in American uniforms to mislead American forces in the Bulge, and after the war headed the organization that helped hundreds of ex-SS officers flee Germany. In 1970, a cancerous tumor was discovered on Skorzeny's spine. Two tumors were removed in Hamburg, but the surgery left him paralyzed from the waist down. Vowing to walk again, Skorzeny spent long hours with a physical therapist and within six months was back on his feet. He finally succumbed to cancer on July 5, 1975 in Madrid. German veterans sand an old Spanish song at his wake, and a Nazi salute was offered outside the church following the service. Present are over 225 letters of condolence, cards, and telegrams sent to Skorzeny's widow Ilse following his death. The vast majority of the correspondence is personal in nature, usually in the form letters and cards with lengthy messages in German, with some in French and Spanish. Senders include former comrades in arms, industrialists who did business with Skorzeny, politicians, and a few collector-vultures. This archive, largely unresearched, includes messages from Hitler Youth leader ARTUR AXMANN who eulogizes Skorzeny: "...his life became history...his exemplary service was highly regarded not only by his friends but also by his former enemies..."; letters from relatives MARIA SKORZENY and CHRISTINE JORNOD-SKORZENY; RICHARD SCHULZE-KOSSENS, Waffen-SS adjutant to von Ribbentrop, also commended the 38th SS Division Niebelungun: "...as long as World War II is written and spoken about, the history will include Otto Skorzeny...if we had not lost the war, our children would read about it in their schoolbooks and learn what loyalty means..."; HERMANN PETZOLT, chancellor of the "Reichsordenskapitels Reichsbekenntniskreuz", calls Skorzeny "the bravest man of the century" and includes a pamphlet bearing a photo of Hitler and a poem "The Saga of the Third Reich", ADOLF VON THADDEN, far-right politician believed to be a spy for MI-6; HANS-HENDRIK NEUMANN, adjutant to Reinhard Heydrich and chief of the NSDAP mission in Norway, later a board member at Phillips; HENDRIK C. VERTO, member of the Dutch Waffen-ss (Wiking Div.) and author; WILHELM ROEDER, SS Brigade leader; KARL RADL, Skorzeny's wartime adjutant; TEODOR SOUCEK, Waffen-SS officer who served under Skorzeny, Holocaust revisionist living in Spain; ALFRED FRAUENFELD, Austrian Nazi political leader, FRIEDRICH MUSCULUS, Panzerjager leader of Detachment #111, RKT, JOSE LUIS JEREZ RIESCO, President of the Cultural Assoc., Friends of Leon Degrelle; UDO WALENDY, German Holocaust denier; WILLY GOETZ, SS-Oberscharfuhrer; the widow of Hitler's driver, ERICH KEMPKA; HANS-BOTHO VON PORTATIUS, financier; a postcard showing a German soldier signed by ten veterans of the Kondor Legion; HELMUT MERSCHER, Waffen-SS veteran and author; WERNER HUNKE, SS Obersturmfuhrer of a Jager division; STEFAN SCHACHERMAYER, aide to a gauleiter, aided in the attempted escape of Nazis post-war; GUNTHER SYRUP, top level SS administrator who maintained Himmler's personal files on friends and enemies; a card from the veterans of the 258th Infantry Division, Stuttgart; MAX GRUNDIG, radio pioneer; a testimonial from a Spanish youth organization; a letter from the Consul General of France in Sao Paulo; GUNNAR DRAGSHOLT, author; and a letter from an unknown SS-Hauptsturmfuhrer of the Wiking Division ("Schomer"?), pleasantly retired in Italy, who writes that he had many years of correspondence and, in 1975, closes his letter with "Sieg Heil!". An excellent grouping that should be thoroughly read and researched.

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May 8, 2012 11:00 AM EDT
Stamford, CT, US

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