Herfurth, Otto.

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Herfurth, Otto, born 22-01-1893, in Hasserode, Province of Saxony, joined the 3rd Lower Silesian Infantry Regiment No. 50 on 11-08-1914 as a cadet. With this Regiment, he then went into the First World War. In his regiment he was promoted to leutnant on 30-09-1915. Later he was transferred to the 403 Infantry Regiment. After the First World War he was then taken over by the Reich Army. First he was used in the 8th (Prussian) Infantry Regiment. He served there until he was promoted to leutnant on 01-10-1925. He was then transferred to the headquarters of the Hammerstein military training area. On 01-10-1929 he was transferred back to the 8th (Prussian) Infantry Regiment. On 01-10-1929 he was promoted to Hauptmann. As such, he was then transferred to the staff of the 1st Division of the Reichswehr, under command of General/later Field Marshal of the Infantry Werner von Blomberg.  On 01-10-1931, he was transferred to the 2nd (Prussian) Cavalry Regiment. After exactly one year, on 01-10-1932, he was appointed company commander in the 15th Infantry Regiment. As such, he was promoted to Major on 01-09-1935. On 15-10-1935 he was transferred to the Reich Ministry of War (RKM). There he was now employed as the successor to Major Paul Riedel, as an adjutant to the Chief of the Army Weapons Office (Wa A), Generalleutnant Kurt Liese. On 01-06-1938 he was promoted to Oberstleutnant. On 01-08-1938 he was appointed commander of the 1st Battalion of the 17th Infantry Regiment. On 01-07-1939 he was transferred to the OKH. After the French campaign, he was appointed commander of the 117th Infantry Regiment on 15-11-1940. As such, he was promoted to Oberst on 01-06-1941. In the same month he led his Regiment into the Russian campaign. He advanced with his regiment in southern Russia. On 18-09-1942, he was awarded the Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross. On 15-03-1943, he gave up his command and was transferred to Stuttgart as Chief of the General Staff for the Deputy General Command V Army Corps. On  01-10-1943 he was promoted to Generalmajor. On 01-06-1944, he was appointed Chief of the General Staff to Deputy General Command III. Army Corps transferred to Berlin.

Death and burial ground of Herfurth, Otto.

 On July 20, 1944, Herfurth initially supported the attempted coup.  He then switched sides later in the evening. On 14-08-1944 he was arrested in connection with investigations into July 20, 1944. He was released from the Wehrmacht by the Court of Honor, ranks and orders and dishonorably discharged from the Arrmy. The People’s Court, under jurist Roland Freisler,

was able to pass judgment on the civilian Herfurth on September 28 and 29, 1944. He was sentenced to death on 29-09-1944 and hanged in Berlin-Plötzensee prison  on the same day, next to Joachim Meichssner, Fritz von der Lancken, Wilhelm-Friedrich zu Lynar and Joachim Sadrozinski

Oberst Joachim Meichssner, age 38, was deployed at Potsdam during the 20 July plot; initially his involvement in the coup remained undetected but his father, a member of the Confessional Church in Wittenberg, was arrested by the Gestapo on 21-07-1944. A week later Joachim Meichssner was also arrested.

Oberleutnant  Fritz von der Lancken, age 54, on July 20, 1944, temporarily guarded the designated military district commander of military district III, General Joachim von Kortzfleisch, in the Bendler block. After the uprising was crushed, he himself was arrested.and hanged. He has a gravestone of honor on the Invaliden cemetery in Berlin.

Reserveoffizier der Wehrmacht Graf Wilhelm Friedrich Rochus Graf zu Lynar, age 45, on July 20, 1944, accompanied his former superior, Erwin von Witzleben, to the Bendler block. After the failed assassination attempt, he and Lynar were arrested by the Gestapo in Seese. Shortly before the attack, Lynar burned his guest book and thus prevented further arrests. On .29-09-1944, the People’s Court sentenced Wilhelm Friedrich Graf zu Lynar to death; on the same day he was hanged.

Oberst Joachim Sadrozinski, age 37, was responsible for the duplication and transmission of the “Valkyrie” orders in the Bendlerblock in Berlin. He was arrested by the Gestapo immediately after the attack on Hitler on 20 July 1944 and on 21-08-1944 was sentenced to death by the Freisler Volksgerichtshof. On 29-09-1944 Sadrozinski was hanged.

Herfurth, Otto and all of them resistance men are buried at the Plözensee prison cemetery in Berlin.


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