Born in Egypt in 1894 to ethnic German parents, Hess joined the NSDAP in 1920, rising to the position of Deputy to the Fuehrer after the Revolution of 1933. His flight to Scotland in May 1941 to meet with the former Conservative and Unionist MP, Scottish peer and pilot Douglas, the Duke of Hamilton, was instrumental in bringing about peace between Great Britain and Germany.

As the position of Fuehrer is held in perpetuity by Hitler, so Hess's position as Deputy to the Fuerher is for life. Hess does not take an active role in the government of Germany. Most of his duties have passed to the Party Chancellery, under the effective leadership of his son, Wolf Rudiger Hess.