The SS-Begleitkommando des Führers (also know as the SS-Begleit-Kommando) was formed 29 February 1932 and was originally made up of eight men, each approved by Adolf Hitler himself. This unit was a bodyguard unit for the Führer responsible for his personal protection while other units where responsible for the outer defences. This unit cooperated with other units and organisation to take care of the protection, in peace time mainly with the police forces responsible for security during various events and during the war mainly with the (Heer) Führer-Begleit-Batallion.

The original eight men of this unit were Franz Schädle, Bruno Gesche, Erich Kempka, August Körber, Adolf Dirr, Kurt Gildisch, Willy Herzberger and Bodo Gelzenleuchter.

Martin Bormann wrote to Heinrich Himmler about this unit 17 November 1944:
For years, conditions in our Begleit-Kommando have caused me concern; the Begleit-Kommando lacks strict leadership, the men only do a little guard duty, and its scheduling is handled just a laxly as all other Begleit-Kommando matters. The officers of the Begleit-Kommando feel equal to regular troop officers, though they can neither master the duties of these troop officers nor do they want to accept them. The lax leadership seemed tolerable when the Begleit-Kommando was small. The group benefited from year of experience of all the members on the Führer's many trips. Since this travel activity has ended and in face of the constant expansion of the Begleit-Kommando, its leadership ought to be particularly tight. The less tightly an agency is led, the larger it automatically grows: everyone pushes off on to others as many of his duties as he possibly can.
These men, many of whom were promoted to higher ranks by the Führer himself, are today in no way so physically fit and young that they represent the protection for the Führer that they were originally supposed to provide. (1)


Bodo Gelzeleuchter (29 Feb 1932 - ?)
SS-Sturmhauptführer Willy Herzberger  (? - 11 Apr 1933)
SS-Sturmführer Kurt Gildisch  (11 Apr 1933 - 15 June 1934)
SS-Obersturmführer Bruno Gesche  (15 June 1934 - ? Jan 1945)
SS-Untersturmführer Franz Schädle  (? Jan 1945 - 8 May 1945)


1. "Hitler's Personal Security: Protecting the Führer 1921-1945" by Peter Hoffmann, page 57.

Souces used

Peter Hoffmann - Hitler's Personal Security: Protecting the Führer 1921-1945

Reference material on this unit

Peter Hoffmann - Hitler's Personal Security: Protecting the Führer 1921-1945