John Patler

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George Lincoln Rockwell speaks, on the right side stands John Patler
Arrest photo of John Patler

John Patler (born Yanacki Christos Patsalos[1] also John Chirst Patsalos[2] on January 6, 1938), is the convicted assassin of American Nazi Party founder George Lincoln Rockwell. Patler--born in the Bronx--was of Greek heritage and grew up in a poor and violent family. His father shot and killed his mother in 1943 and was imprisoned at Sing Sing in New York. Patler served in the US Marines from 1958 to 1960 and was honorably discharged after being arrested at a Party rally.

He legally changed his name in 1960 to John Patler to make his surname sound close to Hitler's name. While he was involved with the American Nazi Party he was the chief cartoonist for their publication, The Stormtrooper.

Patler was a former member of the New York based National Renaissance Party and became an early member of the American Nazi Party rising to the rank of captain. In 1962 he left the ANP with Daniel Burros and formed the American National Party which lasted about a year. In the Summer of 1966 he moved back to Virginia and rejoined Rockwell’s organization. For the next few months he drifted in and out of the party. During this time in Chicago he was working with the party attempting to organize their motorcycle corps called the White Guard.[3] Patler developed Marxist leanings and began to cause friction between fair and dark complexion party members. Rockwell expelled him from the party in March 1967.

In Arlington, Virginia on August 25, 1967, Patler fired two shots from his Mauser semi-automatic pistol, striking Rockwell twice, once in the head and the other in the chest. Patler was convicted of the murder and received a twenty year sentence. Paroled in 1975, he breached his parole conditions and served a further six years, being released in 1981.

ADL conspiracy

Roy Frankhouser claims the ADL was tied to Patler and Rockwell’s assassination. He claims Patler tried to sell him the murder weapon a month before the assassination.[4]

On a different note Karl Allen, the former deputy commander to Rockwell, believed Patler was framed by the ADL and started a John Patler Defense Fund on his behalf.

Later life

Patler changed his name back to Patsalos and moved to New York.[5] He has a son, Nicholas Patsalos.[6]


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