The two brothers Keresztes-Fischer, Ferenc and Lajos were two prominent figures in Hungarian society up until the war years. They were both members of the Order of Vitéz and were both in opposition to the Nazis, something they would pay a high price for.
Ferenc Keresztes-Fischer was a lawyer and politician. He was appointed as Minister of the Interior of Hungary twice, 1931-35 and 1938-44. During the Second World War he was an active supporter of the Regent, Admiral Miklós Horthy. After the death of Pál Teleki in 1941, Keresztes-Fischer became acting Prime Minister on that day. One year later, in March 1942, prime minister Bárdossy was forced to resign suddenly by Regent Horthy and as Minister of the Interior, Ferenc-Keresztes was the interim Prime Minister until Miklós Kállay was appointed to this position.Ferenc Keresztes-Fischer was one of the prominent figures who encouraged Regent Horthy to establish contacts with the Allies to negotiate Hungary’s treatment after the war.
Lajos Keresztes-Fischer was a veteran of the First World War who continued his military career in the independent Hungary. From 1935 to 1938 he served as Chief of the Military Chancellery. He became Chief of General Staff for several months when his predecessor Lieutenant-General Jenő Rátz was appointed Minister of Defence in the cabinet of Béla Imrédy. In 1938 he became Chief of the Military Chancellery again. During the first years of the Second World War he served as Adjutant-General of the Military Chancellery. He was retired in 1943.
During the Arrow Cross Party’s coup in October 1944, the two brothers were arrested by the Gestapo and were deported to Dachau concentration camp by the Nazis after the occupation of Hungary in March 1944. Miraculously, both brothers survived the concentration camps and after the war they emigrated to Austria where they both died in 1948, Ferenc in February and Lajos in April.