Originally Posted by Temujin
My thought, “who was the unlucky guy that DID get gun down by the Germans?”
I came across a somewhat similar case, in California, May 1907....
KILLED IN MISTAKE
A Count's Tragic End.
"A body has just been exhumed by order of the authorities from a pauper's grave in San Francisco, and identified as that of Count Otto Von Waldstein, a veteran of the Boer war, in which he took the Dutch side. His friends declare that he is a nephew of a prince of the House of Wuertemberg, and he took service with the Boers because the course of true love did not run smoothly with him in Austria. At the conclusion of the war he came to the United States.
The circumstances of his death were extraordinary. A murder having been committed outside the city, the sheriff sent a body of men into the hills in the direction which he believed the murderer had taken. Count Otto, being suddenly surprised by these men, believed himself to be attacked, and his attitude of defence gave the pursuers the idea that they had caught the criminal.
Shots were exchanged, and the count was killed, and there being no one at hand to claim his body, and the money upon him being insufficient to pay for burial, he was buried in unconsecrated ground. The inquiries of his friends led to the mistake being discovered."
COUNT VON WALDSTEIN WRITES TO ALAMEDA MAN
Says He Hopes that Report of His Death at Willows May Mean Long Life to Him
ALAMEDA, May 10. - Count Otto von Waldstein, who was reported by a San Francisco morning paper to have been the man shot and killed by a constable's posse at Willows and who is now at Klamath Falls, Ore., has written a letter to Alexander Politzer of this city in which he says: I am very much excited by the news of my tragic death and can only write a few lines. You know I am a crack shot and had it been me at whom the pursuers shot I feel quite certain that several of them would have been left on the field of battle. Does this death notice mean long life to me? I hope so."