Erwin Johannes Eugen Rommel was born November 15, 1891 and is known respectfully as the Desert Fox for his exploits on the field during WWII. His troops and enemies alike respected him.
He was an exceedingly decorated officer in WWI and was also given the Pour le Merite for his efforts in invading Italy. In WWII he was the commanding officer of the 7th Panzer Division and led the offensive into France. He commanded Italian and German military forces in the North African campaign which established him as one of the most valuable commanders of WWII. He is regarded as the perfect commander for desert warfare and his exploits are legendary. He commanded the German forces that opposed the Allied invasion of Normandy.
He was both humane and a professional soldier. He never allowed his soldiers to commit war crimes and enemy soldiers captured during his campaigns were rated humanely. Rommel was ordered to kill Jewish soldiers and civilians but these order were ignored. He was linked to the conspiracy to kill Adolf Hitler. Hitler knew that the German people loved Rommel and his court-martial and death would cause high morale problems. Hitler forced Rommel to commit suicide via cyanide pill. It was agreed that Rommel's family and staff would not be be persecuted. Rommel was declared dead due to a heart attack following a car accident. In 2013 reports from Dr. Friedrich Breiderhoff verified that Rommel died due to poisoning. Breiderhoff was forced to falsify Rommel's death certificate on October 14, 1944.
Rommel received the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves, swords and Diamonds, and the Order of Michael the Brave. He was married to Lucia Maria Mollin Rommel and they had one son who died in 2013.