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Albrecht von Mertz von Quirnheim

(1905- 1944)

Albrecht von Mertz von Quirnheim was a career officer and close friend of Colonel Claus von Stauffenberg.

He succeeded Stauffenberg as Chief of Staff to General Friedrich Olbricht, a co-conspirator in the plot against Hitler. Quirnheim wasintimately involved in planning the coup and worked with Olbricht and Stauffenberg to update Operation Valkyrie for the planned uprising.

Quirnheim played important supporting role on July 15, 1944 when Stauffenberg went to the Wolf's Lair to stage a second assassination attempt against Hitler. After Stauffenberg reported the absence of Himmler and Goering at Hitler's briefing, generals Beck and Olbricht ordered Stauffenberg to abort the attempt. Quiernheim and Stauffenberg secretly agreed that the opportunity to kill Hitler must be seized regardless. But when Stauffenberg returned to the briefing room, the conference had already ended.

On July 20, 1944, Quirnheim pulled out the Operation Valkyrie orders from the safe at Army High Command Headquarters in Berlin and together with Olbricht ordered the first teletype directives sent to all military bases throughout the Reich announcing Hitler's assassination and the army's seizure of power under Field Marshal Erwin von Witzleben.

Quirnheim stood by Stauffenberg to the end and was executed by firing squad with him in the inner courtyard of the Bendlerstrasse.

Sources: Joric Center