Man Sent to Nazi Camp for Being Gay Dead at 98

Rudolf Brazda was last known survivor of persecution over homosexuality
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Aug 4, 2011 1:00 PM CDT
In this 2008 file photo, Rudolf Brazda stands in front of a monument for homosexuals hounded by Nazis in Berlin, Germany.   (Ronny Hartmann)

(Newser) – Rudolf Brazda, believed to be the last surviving person who was sent to a Nazi concentration camp because of his homosexuality, died yesterday at age 98. Brazda was sent to Buchenwald in 1942 and held there until its liberation by US forces in 1945. Nazi Germany declared homosexuality an aberration that threatened the German race, and convicted some 50,000 homosexuals as criminals. An estimated 10,000 to 15,000 gay men were deported to concentration camps, where few survived.

Brazda grew up in the eastern German town of Meuselwitz and repeatedly ran into trouble with Nazi authorities over his homosexuality before being sent to Buchenwald. He lived in the Alsace region of eastern France after World War II. Earlier this year, Brazda was named a knight in the country's Legion of Honor.

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