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Rochus Misch, bodyguard, messenger and telephone operator for Adolf Hitler, died in Berlin on Thursday after a brief illness. At age 96, Misch was the last survivor and witness to Hitler's final hours. Misch repeatedly expressed his joy in working for Hitler and his pride in his work.
Misch was born in Alt Schalkowitz, a small Silesian town (Poland today), in 1917. The Associated Press reports that he signed up for the SS when he was 20, joining the Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler, where he would serve as personal protection for Hitler. Misch aided in the protection of Hitler's bunker and stood outside the door when he and his wife killed themselves. After the war, Misch spent nine years as a prisoner in Soviet Union war camps before returning to his family in Berlin in 1954.
According to the Los Angeles Times, Misch never expressed any regrets about his contributions to World War II or said anything negative about his leader. He even went as far as denying any knowledge of the millions of genocide deaths that occurred at Nazi concentration camps.
In an interview with Salon, Misch said, "I ask you, if Hitler really did all the terrible things people now say he did, how could he have been our Fuhrer? How is that possible?" Hitler's right-hand man remained loyal to “the Furor” to his last breath.
"He wasn't a monster or a superhuman," Misch said to Express. "He stood across from me like a completely normal man with nice words."
Misch's daughter, Brigitta Jacobs-Engelken, revealed to the BBC that her mother and Misch's wife Gerda was Jewish. Like everything else, Misch refused to accept or believe it.