‘My Nazi grandfather would have shot me’: Nigerian woman discovers she is granddaughter of Schindler’s List ‘Butcher of Plaszow’ Amon Goeth

Jennifer Teege stumbled on shocking family secret after coming across book about the brutal Nazi commander

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The Independent Online

A German-Nigerian woman has discovered she is the granddaughter of Nazi Amon Goeth - also known as the ‘Butcher of Plaszow’ concentration camp.

Author Jennifer Teege, who was adopted shortly after birth, stumbled on her shocking family secret after coming across a book about the brutal Nazi commander written by her birth mother Monika Goeth.

A vicious sadist who enjoyed torturing captives and was even dismissed by the Nazis for his particularly barbaric treatment and punishment of prisoners, Amon Goeth’s horrific story came to international attention after British actor Ralph Fiennes played him in the Oscar winning 1993 film Schindler’s List.

Although she noticed that she shared Amon Goeth’s surname upon watching the film, Ms Teege simply assumed it was a coincidence as she had never been told who her grandfather was.

After reading her mother’s book and subsequently digging into her family history however, Ms Teege quickly realised that the notoriously cruel commander - who was executed for his war crimes in 1946 while still pledging support to the Nazi cause - was, in fact, her grandfather.

In her own book detailing her discovery, Ms Teege says: “It was like the carpet was ripped out beneath my feet… I had to go and lie down on a bench. I called my husband and told him I couldn't drive and needed to be picked up.”

Elsewhere in ‘Amon: My Grandfather Would Have Shot Me’, Ms Teege reveals that she was born in 1970 after Amon’s daughter Monika had a ‘fling’ with a Nigerian man.

Although she was adopted by a wealthy couple in Munich shortly after her birth, Ms Teege always kept in contact with the Goeth family, even being visited by her grandmother Ruth - Amon Goeth’s widow and former secretary.

Sadly she has recently lost contact with her birth mother - now known as Monika Hertwig - who Ms Teege says has always been “unable to cope with her own history”.

Ms Hertwig previously gave an emotional interview to Israeli television in which she stood outside Amon Goeth’s former home, declared herself “tormented” by his memory, and condemned him for shooting “women with babies in their arms from this balcony”.

Ms Teege added that she understood her birth mother had only meant to protect her by keeping her in the dark about who her grandfather was.

She added that Ms Hertwig must have known only too well how much of an impact a relation who famously “killed for fun” can have on a person.

Since finding out she was related to Amon Goeth, Ms Teege says she has visited the ruins of Plaszow concentration camp, and also seen the house her grandfather had lived in.