FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — Bundesliga club Eintracht Frankfurt has stripped a former president of an honor because of his links with the Nazi regime.
Current club president Peter Fischer told its annual meeting on Sunday that an investigation into Rudolf Gramlich, who died in 1988, found Gramlich had been a member of the Nazi party and the paramilitary SS.
Gramlich has been stripped of his status as an honorary president because that role should be filled by someone who is a role model in moral as well as sporting terms, Fischer said.
“Rudolf Gramlich accepted the violent rule of National Socialism in an approving manner,” Fischer said.
Gramlich played soccer for Frankfurt before and during World War II. He was in charge of the club in the late 1930s and early 1940s and president from 1955 through 1970, including for Frankfurt’s only German league title in 1959. He also played for Germany, including at the 1936 Olympics in Berlin.
The German soccer federation said on Friday it had a special duty to support Holocaust Memorial Day because its own former president, Felix Linnemann, was directly responsible for registering Sinti and Roma people and sending hundreds of people to be murdered at the Auschwitz extermination camp.
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