Charlotte (CBS CHARLOTTE) – The highest-ranking Nazi put on trial at Nuremberg for war crimes killed himself prior to execution in 1946, but his famous vehicle made it all the way to North Carolina.
The vehicle of notorious Nazi, Hermann Goering, has made its way around Europe and North America amid a series of different owners and restoration attempts. According to the Times of Israel, the specially designed 1941 Mercedes Benz 540K Cabriolet B is the last of its type to have ever been made, and at the time of its development was one of the most powerful vehicles in the world.
Now, North Carolina resident Richard Taylor and car aficionados Steven Saffer and David Rathbun are looking to restore the vehicle and find it a new home. The vehicle is currently being restored by High Velocity Classics of Pompano Beach, Fla.
“We’ve consulted with the rabbi [Leonid Feldman] at Temple Beth El in West Palm Beach, and following his recommendation, we are going to see if the US Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington or Yad Vashem in Jerusalem would be interested in it,” Rathbun told the Times of Israel. “We’d need a donor to come forward to help us with that.”
According to Rathbun, only three Third Reich cars currently reside in North America: Another one of Goering’s is at West Point in upstate New York, and one of Hitler’s is at the Canadian War Museum in Ottawa.
After World War II, Goering was convicted of war crimes and crimes against humanity at the Nuremberg Trials. He was the highest-ranking Nazi to be tried, and was sentenced to death by hanging. But Goering committed suicide by ingesting cyanide the night before the sentence was to be carried out.
And the men made clear that the restoration and sale of the famous Nazi vehicle will not be for personal gain. “Whatever profit we make, we will give a significant portion to a Jewish cause,” said Rathbun.
They are considering serious collectors and various other museums, anywhere the historical significance of the vehicle would be most appreciated.