Horst Wessel Dies From Wounds Received From German Communist, Becomes Nazi Martyr

Horst Wessel Dies From Wounds Received From German Communist, Becomes Nazi Martyr

Horst Wessel, 1929
Source: Deutsches Bundesarchiv

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Horst Ludwig Wessel dies due to gunshot wounds received from Alfred Höhler, a member of the German communist party (KPD). Wessel himself was reportedly involved in the murder of a communist earlier in the day that he was shot, January 14.

The first Nazi "martyr," Horst Wessel will be immortalized in the song "Die Fahne hoch" ("The Flag on High"). Usually called "the Horst Wessel Song," it becomes the Nazi Party anthem and eventually the "co-national anthem" of Germany.

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Horst Wessel Funeral

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