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Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Martin Schilling

Martin Schilling

Career:

Branch: Civilian
Born: 1 October 1911
Died: 8 May 2000 in United States of America

Appointment's:
Kummersdorf 1936
Peenemünde

Decorations:

Personal Information:

Dipl.-Ing. Martin Schilling was a German scientist, during World War II. Martin Schilling attended the Institute of Technology in Hanover and received a doctorate in applied physics in 1937. After joining Wernher von Braun. Staff in 1940, he rose to the position of technical director of the German Army test organisation at Peenemünde. And was involved in the development of the V-2 rocket engine and took over from Dipl.-Ing. Walter Thiel after Peenemünde was heavily bombed in an operation called Hydra.

Dipl.-Ing. Martin Schilling was relocated to the United States. After World War II, as part of Operation Paperclip. Where he worked under Wernher von Braun.

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Ernst Scheurlen

Ernst Scheurlen

Career:

Branch: Kaiserliche Marine / Reichsmarine / Kriegsmarine
Born: 5 December 1894 in Strasbourg, France.
Died: 8 April 1945 Groß-Eilsdorf, Walsrode, Germany.

Ranks:
Vizeadmiral 1 August 1944
Konteradmiral 1 April 1942
Kommodore
Kapitän zur See 1 March 1938
Fregattenkapitän 1 October 1936
Korvettenkapitän 1 December 1931
Kapitänleutnant 1 August 1924
Oberleutnant zur See 25 December 1917
Leutnant zur See 22 March 1915
Oberfähnrich zur See
Fähnrich zur See 12 April 1913

Decorations:

Commands:
Kabeljau
Takes command on 13 June 1917
Ends command on March 1918

T134
Takes command on 1 October 1922
Ends command on 28 February 1924

Königsberg
Takes command on 2 November 1938
Ends command on 27 June 1939

Personal Information:

Ernst Scheurlen was born on 5 December 1894 in Strasbourg, France and was a serving member of the Kriegsmarine during World War II and managed to attain the rank of Vizeadmiral and went on to command the following Kabeljau, T134 and Königsberg.

Ernst Scheurlen joined Kaiserliche Marine as a Seekadett on 1 April 1912 and went to the naval school and continued his training on board heavy cruiser Victoria Louise.

During the First World War Ernst Scheurlen was given the command of the axillary minelaying steamer Kabeljau on 13 June 1917 and remained in command until March 1918 during the interwar years he was given command of the Fleet tender T134 on 1 October 1922 until 28 February 1924 many years later he was transferred to the light cruiser Königsberg on 2 November 1938 until 27 June 1939.

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Klaus Heinrich Scheufelen

Career:

Branch: Civilian
Born: 30 October 1913 in Oberlenningen, Lenningen, German.
Died: 26 January 2008

Appointment's:
Peenemünde 1942

Decorations:

Personal Information:

Dipl.-Ing. Klaus Heinrich Scheufelen was a German engineer and scientist during World War II Klaus was the son of a paper manufacturer Adolf Scheufelen. After leaving school Klaus Heinrich Scheufelen attended the technical University of Darmstadt he graduated in 1937, with a doctorate in engineering. With the outbreak of World War II, he joined the Army, but because of his qualifications in 1942, Klaus was transferred to the army research centre at Peenemünde where he started work, developing anti-aircraft missiles, such as EMW Wasserfall (Waterfall) and his own project. The EMW Taifun (Typhoon).

Dipl.-Ing. Klaus Heinrich Scheufelen was relocated to the United States. After World War II, as part of Operation Paperclip. Where he worked under Wernher von Braun.

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Otto Scherber

Career:

Branch: Luftwaffe
Born:
Died:

Ranks:
Major
Hauptmann
Oberleutnant
Leutnant
Fähnrich

Decorations:

Commands:
III. Bataillon
Takes command on
Ends command on

Personal Information:

Otto Scherber and was a serving member of the Luftwaffe during the Second World War and managed to attain the rank of Major and went on to command the following III. Bataillon. Otto Scherber was given the command of the III. Bataillon (3rd Battalion) during the Battle of Crete.

The III. Bataillon (3rd Battalion) dropped in the area east of Maleme airfield, right on top of the New Zealand defensive positions south of the coastal road. The III. Bataillon (3rd Battalion) suffered high casualties with many Fallschirmjäger being killed as they came down and struggled out of their harnesses, or whilst searching for weapons containers. Nevertheless, small groups of survivors went into action and carried out hits and run attacks on enemy positions or held their ground against local counterattacks.

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Sources:

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Otto Schenk

Otto Schenk

Career:

Branch: Kaiserliche Marine / Reichsmarine / Kriegsmarine
Born: 17 February 1891 in Bergedorf, Hamburg, Germany.
Died: 19 December 1972 in Elmshorn, Schleswig-Holstein, Germany.

Ranks:
Vizeadmiral 1 March 1942
Konteradmiral 1 January 1940
Kommodore
Kapitän zur See 1 January 1936
Fregattenkapitän 1 April 1934
Korvettenkapitän 1 December 1928
Kapitänleutnant 1 January 1921
Oberleutnant zur See 25 June 1917
Leutnant zur See 27 September 1913
Oberfähnrich zur See
Fähnrich zur See 15 April 1911

Decorations:

Commands:
Leipzig
Takes command on 29 September 1935
Ends command on 1 October 1937

Personal Information:

Otto Schenk was born on 17 February 1891 in Bergedorf, Hamburg, Germany and was a serving member of the Kriegsmarine during World War II and managed to attain the rank of Vizeadmiral and went on to command the following Leipzig.

Otto Schenk joined Kaiserliche Marine as a Seekadett on 1 April 1911 and went to the naval school and continued his training on board heavy cruiser Freya.

Otto Schenk was given the command of the light cruiser Leipzig on 29 September 1935 and remained in command until 1 October 1937.

Gallery:

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Sources:

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Alfred Schemmel

Career:

Branch: Kriegsmarine
Born: 24 August 1900.
Died: 31 December 1942.

Ranks:
Fregattenkapitän
Korvettenkapitän
Kapitänleutnant
Oberleutnant zur See
Leutnant zur See
Oberfähnrich zur See
Fähnrich zur See

Decorations:

Commands:
Albatros
Takes command on September 1932
Ends command on December 1932

Greif
Takes command on December 1932
Ends command on February 1934

Kondor
Takes command on February 1934
Ends command on September 1934

Friedrich Eckoldt
Takes command on July 1938
Ends command on February 1941

Friedrich Eckoldt
Takes command on May 1941
Ends command on September 1941

Friedrich Eckoldt
Takes command on October 1941
Ends command on July 1942

Personal Information:

Alfred Schemmel was born on 24 August 1900 was a serving member of the Kriegsmarine during World War II and managed to attain the rank of Fregattenkapitän and went on to command the following Albatros, Greif, Kondor and Friedrich Eckoldt (Z16).

Alfred Schemmel was given the command of the torpedo boat Albatros on September 1932 and remained in command until December 1932 he then transferred to the torpedo boat Greif on December 1932 until February 1934 he was transferred again to the torpedo boat Kondor on February 1934 until September 1934 he was then transferred to the destroyer arm and given the command of the destroyer Friedrich Eckoldt (Z16) on July 1938 until July 1942.

Gallery:

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Sources:

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Reinhard Scheer

Reinhard Scheer

Career:

Branch: Kaiserliche Marine
Born: 30 September 1863, Obernkirchen, Lower Saxony, Germany.
Died: 26 November 1928, Marktredwitz, Germany.

Ranks:
Admiral
Vizeadmiral
Konteradmiral
Kommodore
Kapitän zur See
Fregattenkapitän
Korvettenkapitän
Kapitänleutnant
Oberleutnant zur See
Leutnant zur See
Oberfähnrich zur See
Fähnrich zur See

Decorations:
Pour le Merite with oakleaves

Commands:
High Seas Fleet
III Battle Squadron
II Battle Squadron
SMS Elsass
SMS Gazelle

Personal Information:

Reinhard Scheer served in the cruiser Bismarck, 1884-1886, was navigator of the Prince Wilhelm, 1895-1896 and in 1909-1911 was chief of the staff to Henning von Holtzendorff when the latter commanded the High Sea Fleet. Regarded as one of the most energetic and able officers in the German navy, Reinhard Scheer was commanding a battle squadron at Kiel when the Great War broke out, and continued to hold that position until the end of 1915, when Reinhard Scheer became commander-in-chief of the High Sea Fleet.

Reinhard Scheer commanded the German naval forces at Jutland with Franz von Hipper as second in command. On 11 August 1918, the latter took over the chief command when Reinhard Scheer was appointed to succeed Henning von Holtzendorff as chief of the admiralty staff. Reinhard Scheer resigned in January 1919.

Reinhard Scheer's conduct of the operations at Jutland has been the subject of much debate, the German view being that Reinhard Scheer was superior to the British commander in tactics and seamanship.

Reinhard Scheer gave his own account of the battle in Germany's High Sea Fleet in the World War published 1920.

Reinhard Scheer died November 26th, 1928.

Gallery:

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Articles:

Sources:

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Otto Schäfer

Career:

Branch: Kriegsmarine
Born:
Died:

Ranks:
Leutnant zur See
Oberfähnrich zur See
Fähnrich zur See

Decorations:

Commands:
Jaguar
Takes command on November 1943
Ends command on December 1943

Personal Information:

Otto Schäfer was a serving member of the Kriegsmarine during World War II and managed to attain the rank of Leutnant zur See and went on to command the following Jaguar.

Otto Schäfer was given the command of the torpedo boat Jaguar on November 1943 and remained in command until December 1943.

Gallery:

Other: Personnel
Articles:

Sources:

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Kurt Sarrazin

Career:

Branch: Luftwaffe
Born:
Died:

Ranks:
Hauptmann
Oberleutnant
Leutnant
Fähnrich

Decorations:

Commands:
4. Kompanie
Takes command on
Ends command on

Personal Information:

Kurt Sarrazin and was a serving member of the Luftwaffe during the Second World War and managed to attain the rank of Hauptmann and went on to command the following 4. Kompanie.
Kurt Sarrazin was given the command of the 4. Kompanie (4th company) during the Battle of Crete.

4. Kompanie (4th company) landing in the river bed, securing the Tavronitis Bridge, destroying nearby anti-aircraft batteries and gaining a foothold in the RAF camp at Maleme airfield. Walter Koch and Kurt Sarrazin's detachments came down on the southern slope of Hill 107, directly onto the positions of A & B companies, 22nd New Zealand Infantry Battalion. They suffered heavy casualties with Kurt Sarrazin killed and Walter Koch wounded in the head, whilst the survivors were scattered across the hillside.

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Otto Liman von Sanders

Otto Liman von Sanders

Career:

Branch: Kaiserliche Heer
Born: 17 February 1855 in Stolp, Germany.
Died: 22 August 1929 in Munich, Germany.

Ranks:
General der Infanterie
Generalleutnant
Generalmajor
Oberst
Oberstleutnant
Major
Hauptmann
Oberleutnant
Leutnant
Fähnrich

Decorations:

Commands:

Personal Information:

Otto Victor Karl Liman von Sanders, the son of Karl Leonhard Liman, was born at Stolp, Prussia, 16 June 1855. Otto Victor Karl Liman von Sanders entered the German army as a lieutenant of cavalry in 1874. In 1913 Otto Victor Karl Liman von Sanders attained the rank of a general, commanded by the 22nd division, and being ennobled, added von Sanders to the family name.

In 1914 Otto Victor Karl Liman von Sanders was sent to Constantinople and, having been appointed a Turkish field-marshal, was commander-in-chief of the Turkish forces opposing the Allies in Gallipoli in 1915. After the death of Kolmar von der Goltz, Otto Victor Karl Liman von Sanders directed the operations of the Turkish armies in the middle east and in 1918 was in chief command in Palestine and Syria when Allenby conquered those countries.

After the armistice Otto Victor Karl Liman von Sanders surrendered to the Allies, was interned in Malta, and released in August 1919 when he returned to Germany.

Otto Victor Karl Liman von Sanders published Five Years of Turkey, in 1920, an English edition of which appeared in 1928.

Otto Victor Karl Liman von Sanders died August 24th 1929.

Gallery:

Other: Personnel
Articles:

Sources:

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Martin Salzwedel

Career:

Branch: Kriegsmarine
Born:
Died:

Ranks:
Korvettenkapitän
Kapitänleutnant
Oberleutnant zur See
Leutnant zur See
Oberfähnrich zur See
Fähnrich zur See

Decorations:

Commands:
Wolf
Takes command on December 1937
Ends command on February 1938

Z24
Takes command on October 1940
Ends command on October 1943

Personal Information:

Martin Salzwedel was a serving member of the Kriegsmarine during World War II and managed to attain the rank of Korvettenkapitän and went on to command the following Wolf and Z24.

Martin Salzwedel took command of the torpedo boat Wolf on December 1937 and remained in command until February 1938 he then transferred to the destroyer on and was given command of the destroyer Z24 on October 1940 until October 1943.

Gallery:

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Articles:

Sources:

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Wehrmacht Personnel Details For The Letter S

Wehrmacht Personnal Details For The Letter S

There are 59 Wehrmacht Personnel details for the letter S. 

Key for abbreviations. 
(C) = Civilian.
(G) = Government, Royalty.
(H) = Kaiserliche Heer, Reichsheer, Wehrmacht Heer.
(K) = Kaiserliche Marine, Reichsmarine, Kriegsmarine.
(L) = Luftstreitkraefte, Luftwaffe.
(SA) = Sturmabteilung.
(SS) = Waffen SS.
  1. Martin Salzwedel (K)
  2. Otto Liman von Sanders (H)
  3. Kurt Sarrazin (L)
  4. Otto Schäfer (K)
  5. Reinhard Scheer (K)
  6. Alfred Schemmel (K)
  7. Otto Schenk (K)
  8. Otto Scherber (L)
  9. Klaus Heinrich Scheufelen
  10. Ernst Scheurlen (K)
  11. Martin Schilling (C)
  12. Hermann Schlieper (K)
  13. Hubert Schlüter (K)
  14. Kuno Schmidt (K)
  15. Moritz Schmidt (K)
  16. Friedrich Traugott Schmitt (K)
  17. Hubert Schmundt (K)
  18. Walter-Erich Schneider (K)
  19. Otto Schniewind (K)
  20. Klaus Scholtz (K)
  21. Otto von Schrader (K)
  22. Joachim Schramm (K)
  23. Ludwig von Schröder (K)
  24. Paul Schröder (K)
  25. Victor Schütze (K)
  26. Herbert Max Schultz (K)
  27. Herbert Schultze (K)
  28. Günter Schulz (K)
  29. Georg Schulze (K)
  30. Alfred Schulze-Hinrichs (K)
  31. Karl Georg Schuster (K)
  32. Heinz Schuur (K)
  33. Leo Geyr von Schweppenburg (H)
  34. Thilo von Seebach (K)
  35. Hans von Seeckt (H)
  36. Leopold Siemens (K)
  37. Otto Skorzeny (SS)
  38. Karl Smidt (K)
  39. Herbert Sohler (K)
  40. Konrad Sommerlatt (K)
  41. Heinz-Jürgen Sonnenburg (K)
  42. Maximilian Reichsgraf von Spee (K)
  43. Albert Speer (G)
  44. Heinrich Spörel (K)
  45. Rudolf Stange (K)
  46. Hermann von Brosy-Steinberg (K)
  47. Werner Stichling (K)
  48. Hans Herbert Stobwasser (K)
  49. Adolf Strauß (H)
  50. Hans Strecker (K)
  51. Siegfried Strelow (K)
  52. Hellmuth Strobel (K)
  53. Kurt Student (L)
  54. Ernst von Studnitz (K)
  55. Carl-Heinrich von Stülpnagel (H)
  56. Alfed Sturm (L)
  57. Wilhelm Süßmann (L)
  58. Reinhard Suhren (K)
Sources

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Karl Rudolf Gerd von Rundstedt

Karl Rudolf Gerd von Rundstedt


Career:

Branch: Kaiserliche Heer/ Reichsheer / Heer
Born: 12 December 1875 in Aschersleben, Germany.
Died: 24 February 1953 in Hannover, Germany.

Ranks:
Generalfeldmarschall 19 July 1940
Generaloberst 1 March 1938
General der Infanterie 1 October 1932
Generalleutnant 1 March 1929
Generalmajor 1 November 1927
Oberst 1 February 1923
Oberstleutnant 1 October 1920
Major 28 November 1914
Hauptmann 24 March 1909
Oberleutnant 12 September 1902
Leutnant 17 June 1893
Fähnrich

Decorations:
Boxer Rebellion Service Medal 1902
Iron Cross Second 1914
2nd Class
1st Class
Prussian Crown Order 4th Class
Bavarian Military Merit Order 4th Class with Swords and Crown 9 August 1915
Prussian Royal House Order of Hohenzollern Knight's Cross with Swords 1917
Saxon Albert Order Knight 1st Class with Swords
Lippe War Merit Cross
Waldeck Merit Cross
Turkish War Medal
Cross of Honor 1934
Schwarzburg Honor Cross 3rd Class
Sudetenland Medal 1938
Order of the Crown of Italy, Grand Cross (1938)
Clasp to the Iron Cross 1939
2nd Class
1st Class
Knight's Cross 30 September 1939
Romanian Order of Michael the Brave
3rd Class 1941
2nd Class 1941
1st Class 1942
Oak Leaves on 1 July 1944
Swords 18 February 1945
Armed Forces Long Service Award with 40 year Clasp

Commands:
Heeresgruppe Süd
Takes command on 1 September 1939
Ends command on 1 October 1939

Oberbefehlshaber Ost
Takes command on 1 October 1939
Ends command on 20 October 1939

Heeresgruppe A
Takes command on 25 October 1939
Ends command on 1 October 1940

Oberbefehlshaber West
Takes command on 1 October 1940
Ends command on 10 June 1941

Heeresgruppe Süd
Takes command on 10 June 1941
Ends command on 1 December 1941

Oberbefehlshaber West
Takes command on 15 March 1942
Ends command on 2 July 1944

Oberbefehlshaber West
Takes command on 5 September 1944
Ends command on 9 March 1945

Personal Information:

Karl Rudolf Gerd von Rundstedt was born on 12 December 1875 and became a German Generalfeldmarschall (Field Marshal) of the Wehrmacht during the Second World War. Gerd von Rundstedt was born in Aschersleben in the Province of Saxony into an noble Prussian family, and joined the Kaiserliche Heer in 1892, then entered Germany's elite military academy in 1902 an establishment that only accepted only 160 new students each year. During the First World War, Gerd von Rundstedt steadily rose in rank until 1918 when Gerd von Rundstedt promoted to major and was chief of staff of his division.

At the start of the Second World War Gerd von Rundstedt returned as commandant of the Heeresgruppe Süd (Army Group South) in the Poland campaign. Gerd von Rundstedt retained command of large formations during Fall Gelb and was promoted to the rank of Generalfeldmarschall on 19 July 1940. In the Soviet campaign, Gerd von Rundstedt was commandant Heeresgruppe Süd (Army Group South), responsible for the largest encirclement in history, the Battle of Kiev, capital of the Ukraine. Because of the failure of Operation Barbarossa, Gerd von Rundstedt like so many other commanders was dropped by Adolf Hitler, during 1942 Gerd von Rundstedt was recalled in 1942 as Oberbefehlshaber West (German Army Command in the West). Gerd von Rundstedt maintained this command until his final dismissal in March 1945 by Adolf Hitler.

After the First World War, Gerd von Rundstedt rose steadily in the small 100,000 man army of the Reichswehr and in 1932, was appointed commandant of the 3rd Infantry Division. During July 1932, Gerd von Rundstedt carried out the supposed Rape of Prussia that saw the Reichswehr expel the Social Democratic government of Prussia and allowed the Chancellor Franz von Papen to become the Reich Commissioner of Prussia. Later that year Gerd von Rundstedt threatened to resign when Franz von Papen declared martial law and ordered his troops to eject members of the national socialist party from state government offices. During 1938, Gerd von Rundstedt was appointed commandant of the 2. Armee (2nd Army) that occupied the Sudetenland, but Gerd von Rundstedt retired after it was realised that Werner von Fritsch Commander-in-Chief of the Army was framed by the Gestapo in the Werner von Blomberg-Werner von Fritsch Affair. During Gerd von Rundstedt retirement he was given the honorary appointment of Colonel-in-Chief of the 18th Infantry regiment, Gerd von Rundstedt often wore an infantry colonel's uniform and collar patches with his Generalfeldmarschall shoulder insignia until the end of his career. Occasionally, Gerd von Rundstedt was mistaken for a colonel, but he simply laughed at the opinion.

On 1 September 1939, the Second World War had commenced, and Gerd von Rundstedt was called back to active military service to command Heeresgruppe Süd (Army Group South) during the successful invasion of Poland. Turning to the West, Gerd von Rundstedt supported Erich von Manstein's armoured fist approach to the invasion of France, and this was finally chosen as Fall Gelb. During the battle Gerd von Rundstedt was in command of seven Panzer divisions, three motorised infantry divisions, and 35 regular infantry divisions.

On 14 May 1940, the armoured divisions led by Heinz Guderian had crossed the river Meuse and had opened up an immense hole in the Allied front lines. General Gerd von Rundstedt had uncertainties about the survivability of these units without infantry support, and called for for a pause, whilst the infantry caught up, the halt order permitted the British to evacuate their military forces from the beaches of Dunkirk. Subsequently Gerd von Rundstedt disallowed an attack on the Dunkirk beachhead, permitting the British forces to fully evacuate. These events has raised eyebrows over the years. Gerd von Rundstedt and other people later on contended that the decision was Adolf Hitler's and stemmed from his belief that Britain would more readily accept a peace if he magnanimously saved what remained of her military force. Nevertheless, this was no more than a face-saving rationalisation. Gerd von Rundstedt had wanted to conserves his mechanised units for the final push to the south to conclude the campaign against the French while Hermann Göring had convinced Adolf Hitler that the Luftwaffe could get the job done.

Gerd von Rundstedt was promoted to Generalfeldmarschall on 19 July 1940 and took part in the planning of Operation Sea Lion (Invasion of Britain). When the invasion was called off, Gerd von Rundstedt took control of occupation forces and was given responsibility to develop the coastal defences in the Netherlands, Belgium and France.

Operation Barbarossa took place during June 1941, Gerd von Rundstedt was commandant of Heeresgruppe Süd (Army Group South), where he led 52 infantry divisions and 5 Panzer divisions into the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. Initially Gerd von Rundstedt progress was slow, but in September Heeresgruppe Süd (Army Group South) captured Kiev in a double encirclement operation made possible by Joseph Stalin's irrational refusal to abandon the city, whilst the river Dnieper had been crossed both north and south of it. The Germans claimed a phenomenal haul of 665,000 Soviet POWs based on the encircled divisions. Subsequently Gerd von Rundstedt moved east to attack Kharkov and Rostov. Gerd von Rundstedt strongly opposed continuing the advance into the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics during the winter and advised Adolf Hitler to halt the offensive, but his views were disapproved.

During November, Gerd von Rundstedt had a heart attack, but he declined to be hospitalised and persisted in the advance, reaching Rostov on 21 November. A counter-attack forced the Germans back. Whilst Gerd von Rundstedt called for a withdraw, Adolf Hitler became angered and supplanted him with General Walther von Reichenau.

Adolf Hitler recalled Gerd von Rundstedt to duty in March 1942, placing him once again in Oberbefehlshaber West (German Army Command in the West) There he proved complacent, so much so that as late as the autumn of 1943, no fortifications worthy of mention existed along the entire Atlantic shore. It was only after Generalfeldmarschall Erwin Rommel's appointment as Gerd von Rundstedt's ostensible subordinate in November 1943 that fortification work began in earnest. During the debates preceding the landing, Gerd von Rundstedt insisted that the armoured reserves should be held in the operational rear so that they could all be rushed to whatever sector the Allies happened to land in. General Leo Geyr von Schweppenburg the armoured commander supported him, but Erwin Rommel insisted that the armoured forces must be deployed very near the shoreline, just beyond the reach of the Allied naval bombardment. Badly affected by his experiences in North Africa, Erwin Rommel believed that Allied air operations would prohibit movement during the day and even at night gravely inhibit movement. But von Gerd von Rundstedt was convinced that a landing as far west as Normandy was out of the question and that very little armour should be committed there. Ultimately, the armoured divisions were dispersed, and only two were spared to the Channel coast west of the Seine with one assigned to the Normandy sector, a deployment that would have disastrous consequences once the invasion began. After the D-Day landings in June 1944, Gerd von Rundstedt urged Adolf Hitler to negotiate a settlement with the Allies, his frustration culminating in his outburst, Make peace, you idiots! Adolf Hitler responded by replacing him with Generalfeldmarschall Günther von Kluge.

Because of the 20 July plot, which angered Gerd von Rundstedt, he agreed to join Oberkommando der Wehrmacht (Supreme Command of the Armed Forces) chief Generalfeldmarschall Wilhelm Wilhelm Keitel and Heinz Guderian on the Army Court of Honour that drummed out hundreds of officers suspected of being opposed to Adolf Hitler, often on the slightest of evidence. These judgements removed the suspected dissidents from the jurisdiction of the military and turned them over to the Volksgerichtshof (People's Court) and its presiding judge, Roland Freisler. Many of these men were put to death after brief trials.

During the middle of August 1944, Günther von Kluge committed suicide after being implicated in the 20 July Plot and Generalfeldmarschall Walther Model was given command of Oberbefehlshaber West (German Army Command in the West), Walther Model held the post for 18 days before Gerd von Rundstedt was reappointed to command Germany's armed forces in the west. Gerd von Rundstedt mobilised them in time to fight off Operation Market Garden, with Walther Model's Heeresgruppe B (Army Group B) at the centre of the German military defence. While Gerd von Rundstedt was in command of the German forces on the Western front throughout Operation Wacht am Rhein (the Battle of the Bulge, a.k.a. the Gerd von Rundstedt Offensive), Gerd von Rundstedt was opposed to that offensive from its beginning, and fundamentally washed his hands of it. Gerd von Rundstedt was relieved of command for the last time in March 1945, after telling Wilhelm Keitel once more that Adolf Hitler should make peace with the Allies, instead of continuing a lost cause.

Gerd von Rundstedt was apprehended by the United States 36th Infantry Division on 1 May 1945. During his captivity, Gerd von Rundstedt suffered another heart attack whilst being interrogated and was subsequently taken to Britain, where he was held in a POW camp in Bridgend, South Wales and at Redgrave, Suffolk, England.

Gerd von Rundstedt was charged with war crimes, but never faced any trial due to his poor health. Gerd von Rundstedt was released from captivity in 1948. Gerd von Rundstedt died in Hanover on 24 February 1953, at the age of 77.

Gallery:

Other: Personnel
Articles:

Sources:

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Heinrich Ruhfus

Heinrich Ruhfus

Career:

Branch: Kaiserliche Marine / Reichsmarine / Kriegsmarine
Born: 14 April 1895 in Charlottenburg, Berlin, Germany.
Died: 26 May 1955 in Flensburg, Germany.

Ranks:
Konteradmiral 1 September 1942
Kommodore
Kapitän zur See 1 October 1938
Fregattenkapitän 1 January 1937
Korvettenkapitän 1 January 1933
Kapitänleutnant 1 August 1925
Oberleutnant zur See 7 January 1920
Leutnant zur See 18 September 1915
Oberfähnrich zur See
Fähnrich zur See 3 April 1914

Decorations:
Iron Cross 1914
1st Class
2nd Class
Cross of Honor for Combatants
Service Medal
Fleet War Badge
War Merit Cross I. Class with Swords
Iron Cross 1940
1st Class
2nd Class

Commands:
T154
Takes command on 16 October 1922
Ends command on 18 September 1924

T157
Takes command on 19 September 1924
Ends command on 26 September 1926

Niobe
Takes command on 21 September 1930
Ends command on 20 February 1932

Königsberg
Takes command on 14 September 1939
Ends command on 10 April 1940

Personal Information:

Heinrich Ruhfus was born on 14 April 1895 in Charlottenburg, Berlin, Germany and was a serving member of the Kriegsmarine during World War II and managed to attain the rank of Konteradmiral and went on to command the following T154, T157, Niobe and Königsberg.

Heinrich Ruhfus joined Kaiserliche Marine as a Seekadett on 1 April 1913 and went to the naval school and continued his training on board heavy cruiser Victoria Louise.

Heinrich Ruhfus was given the command of the Fleet tender T154 on 16 October 1922 and remained in command until 18 September 1924 he was then transferred to the torpedo boat T157 on 19 September 1924 until 26 September 1926 several years past before he was given command of the training ship Niobe on 21 September 1930 until 20 February 1932 many years past before he was given command of the light cruiser Königsberg on 14 September 1939 until 10 April 1940.

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Arthur Louis Hugo Rudolph

Arthur Louis Hugo Rudolph

Career:

Branch: Civilian
Born: 9 November 1906 in Stepfershausen, Meiningen, Germany.
Died: 1 January 1996 in Hamburg in Germany.

Appointment's:

Decorations:

Personal Information:

Arthur Louis Hugo Rudolph was a German rocket engineer and member of the National Socialist German Workers' party who played a key role in the development of the V-2 rocket. After World War II Arthur Rudolph was brought to the United States, subsequently becoming a pioneer of the United States space program. Arthur Rudolph worked for the United States Army and NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) where Arthur Rudolph managed the development of several important systems including the Pershing missile and the Saturn V Moon rocket. During 1984 Arthur Rudolph was investigated for possible war crimes, and Arthur Rudolph agreed to leave the United States and renounce his US citizenship.

During August 1927 Arthur Rudolph accepted a job at Stock & Co. in Berlin. After a few months, Arthur Rudolph became a toolmaker at Fritz Werner. During 1928 Arthur Rudolph attended the Technical College of Berlin now the Berlin Institute of Technology graduating in 1930 with the equivalent of a Bachelor of Science degree in mechanical engineering. In May 1930, Arthur Rudolph began working for the Heylandt Works in Berlin where Arthur Rudolph met rocketry pioneer Max Valier. Max Valier had use of the factory grounds for his experiments in rocketry and Arthur Rudolph became interested, working with Max Valier in his spare time along with Walter Riedel. Arthur Rudolph already had some interest in rocketry, having read Wege zur Raumschiffahrt (Ways to Spaceflight) by Hermann Oberth and having seen the film Woman in the Moon.

On May 27, an experimental engine exploded and killed Max Valier. Dr. Paulus Heylandt forbade further rocket research, but Arthur Rudolph continued secretly with Walter Riedel and Alfons Pietsch. Arthur Rudolph then developed an improved and safer version of Max Valier's engine while Alfons Pietsch designed a rocket car. Dr. Paulus Heylandt conceded to back the project, and the Heylandt Rocket Car was born and was exhibited at Tempelhof Aerodrome. While it was a technical success, the fuel costs were greater than the admissions received and performances were discontinued. Arthur Rudolph joined the National Socialist German Workers Party in 1931, then later the SA.

Arthur Rudolph first met Wernher von Braun when he visited a meeting of the Verein für Raumschiffahrt (VfR, the Spaceflight Society). During May 1932 Arthur Rudolph was laid off and looking for work when Arthur Rudolph encountered Alfons Pietsch. After forming a partnership Arthur Rudolph began design on a new engine, while Alfons Pietsch looked for a backer. Alfons Pietsch met with Walter Dornberger, who had been tasked by the German Ordnance Department to develop a rocket weapons system and had become interested in the VfR.

After demonstrating the new engine to Walter Dornberger, Arthur Rudolph moved to the proving grounds at Kummersdorf along with Walter Riedel, and began working under Wernher von Braun. Arthur Rudolph's engine was used in the Aggregate series of rockets. In December 1934, the Wernher von Braun team successfully launched two A-2 rockets from the island of Borkum. Static testing on the A-3 engines began in Kummersdorf in late 1936 and were observed by General Werner von Fritsch, the commander-in chief of the German Army High Command.

The Kummersdorf facilities were inadequate for continued operations, so the Wernher von Braun team was moved to Peenemünde in May 1937 where Arthur Rudolph was tasked with the building of the A-3 test stand. The Rudolphs lived in nearby Zinnowitz, where their daughter, Marianne Erika, was born on 26 November 1937. The A-3 series was plagued with guidance problems and never proved successful. In early 1938, Walter Dornberger put Arthur Rudolph in charge of the design for the new production plant to be built at Peenemünde for the A-4 series, later renamed the V-2 rocket Vergeltungswaffe 2 (Reprisal Weapon Two).

In August 1943 as Arthur Rudolph was ready to begin production of the V-2 rocket, the British bombed Peenemünde. The V-2 rocket production facility was moved to the Mittelwerk facility near Nordhausen. Mittelwerk was originally a gypsum mine that was being used as a storage facility and was being excavated for production facilities. The labor force consisted of prisoners who were eventually housed at the Mittelbau-Dora concentration camp. Arthur Rudolph was in charge of moving the equipment from Peenemünde to Mittelwerk, working under Albin Sawatzki. After the plant was in place, Arthur Rudolph was operations director for V-2 rocket production. Albin Sawatzki decreed that fifty were to be produced in December. Given the labor and parts issues, Arthur Rudolph was barely able to produce four rockets that were later returned from Peenemünde as defective.

In 1944, Heinrich Himmler convinced Adolf Hitler to put the V-2 rocket project directly under SS control, and in August replaced Walter Dornberger with SS General Hans Kammler as its director.

In January 1945 the SS ordered all of the civilians and prisoners, including Arthur Rudolph and his team, to attend a public hanging of several prisoners accused of sabotage. By March 1945, production had stopped due to a lack of parts and Arthur Rudolph and his staff were moved to Oberammergau where they met Wernher von Braun and others from Peenemünde. They finally surrendered to the United States Army and were transported to Garmisch.

From July to October 1945, Arthur Rudolph was transferred to the British to participate in Operation Backfire. Arthur Rudolph was then transferred back to the Americans. The United States Army picked up Martha and Marianne Arthur Rudolph from Stepfershausen before it was occupied by the Red Army and the Rudolphs were reunited at Camp Overcast near Landshut. In November 1945, Operation Overcast brought Arthur Rudolph, Wernher von Braun and the rest of the V-2 rocket team temporarily to the US for six months. Overcast was renamed Operation Paperclip in March 1946 and formally approved by President Truman in August 1946, most of the group stayed permanently.

After a brief interrogation at Fort Strong, the team was sent to White Sands Proving Grounds to work on further V-2 rocket engineering in January 1946. In January 1947 Arthur Rudolph was moved to the Ordnance Research and Development Division at Fort Bliss, El Paso, Texas, where his family finally joined him in April. Since Arthur Rudolph had been brought into the US without a visa, Arthur Rudolph and others were sent to Juárez, Mexico where Arthur Rudolph obtained a visa and officially immigrated to the United States on 14 April 1949. During his time at Fort Bliss, Arthur Rudolph acted as a liaison to the Solar Aircraft Company, and spent much of 1947 and 1949 in San Diego, California.

During a 1949 inquiry by the FBI, Arthur Rudolph made the following statement on his participation in the National Socialist German Workers Party:

Until 1930 I sympathised with the social democratic party, voted for it and was a member of a social democratic union After 1930 the economical situation became so serious that it appeared to me to be headed for catastrophe. I really became unemployed in 1932. The great amount of unemployment caused expansion of National Socialist German Workers' Party. and communistic parties. Frightened that the latter one would become the government I Joined the National Socialist German Workers' Party, I believed in the preservation of the western culture.

On 25 June 1950 Arthur Rudolph was transferred to Redstone Arsenal, Huntsville, Alabama, and his group was redesignated as the Ordnance Guided Missile Centre Arthur Rudolph was naturalised as an American citizen on 11 November 1954 in Birmingham, Alabama. In 1950 Arthur Rudolph was appointed as the technical director for the Redstone missile project. Arthur Rudolph was assigned as the project manager for the Pershing missile project in 1956. Arthur Rudolph specifically selected The Martin Company as the prime contractor for the program. Arthur Rudolph also chose the Eclipse Pioneer division of Bendix to develop the guidance system after Arthur Rudolph personally inspected the plant in Teterboro, New Jersey.

Arthur Rudolph received an honorary doctorate of science degree from Rollins College in Winter Park, Florida on 23 February 1959. Arthur Rudolph received the Decoration for Exceptional Civilian Service, the highest Army award for civilians, for his work on Pershing.
Although Wernher von Braun and his team had been transferred to NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) in 1960, Arthur Rudolph stayed with ABMA to continue critical work on Pershing. In 1961 Arthur Rudolph finally moved to NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration), once again working for Wernher von Braun. Arthur Rudolph became the assistant director of systems engineering, serving as liaison between vehicle development at Marshall Space Flight Centre and the Manned Spacecraft Centre in Houston. Arthur Rudolph later became the project director of the Saturn V rocket program in August 1963. Arthur Rudolph developed the requirements for the rocket system and the mission plan for the Apollo program. The first Saturn V launch lifted off from Kennedy Space Centre and performed flawlessly on 9 November 1967, Arthur Rudolph's birthday. Arthur Rudolph was then assigned as the special assistant to the director of MSFC in May 1968 and then retired from NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) on 1 January 1969. During his tenure Arthur Rudolph was awarded the NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) Exceptional Service Medal and the NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) Distinguished Service Medal. On 16 July 1969, the Saturn V launched Apollo 11, putting man on the Moon.

In 1979, Eli Rosenbaum of OSI (Office of Special Investigations), by chance read about Arthur Rudolph in a book about moving rocket parts, using forced labor. Eli Rosenbaum had conducted research at the National Archives, about the Dora war crimes trial, appearing to connect him with the use of forced labor at Mittelwerk. In September 1982, Arthur Rudolph received a letter requesting an interview by the OSI (Office of Special Investigations). Arthur Rudolph believed this was one of the series of interrogations Arthur Rudolph had gone through since his arrival in the United States The first of three interviews, it centred on his attitudes on racial superiority, his early participation in the National Socialist German Workers Party and a possible role in the treatment of prisoners at Mittelwerk.

On 28 November 1983, Arthur Rudolph, purportedly under duress and fearful for the welfare of his wife and daughter, signed an agreement with the OSI (Office of Special Investigations) stating that Arthur Rudolph would leave the United States and renounce his United States citizenship. Under the agreement, Arthur Rudolph would not be prosecuted, the citizenship of his wife and daughter was not in danger of revocation and Arthur Rudolph's retirement and Social Security benefits were left intact. In March 1984 Arthur and Martha Arthur Rudolph departed for Germany where Arthur Rudolph renounced his citizenship as agreed. Germany protested to the United States Department of State, as Arthur Rudolph now had no citizenship in any country. In July, Germany requested documentation from the OSI (Office of Special Investigations) to determine if Arthur Rudolph should be prosecuted or granted citizenship. The World Jewish Congress placed articles in newspapers in January 1985 on behalf of the Department of Justice, searching for survivors of the Mittelwerk.

After receiving documentation in April 1985, the case was investigated by Harald Duhn, the Attorney General of Hamburg. In March 1987, the investigation concluded after questioning a number of witnesses and determining no basis for prosecution, since the only crime not past the statute of limitations was murder. Arthur Rudolph was then granted German citizenship.

Meanwhile, a great deal of controversy occurred back in the United States Arthur Rudolph had not told his friends of the investigation, but the OSI (Office of Special Investigations) issued a press release after his departure. Several groups and individuals were calling for an investigation into the OSI (Office of Special Investigations) activities regarding Arthur Rudolph. These included retired Major General John Medaris (former commander of ABMA), officials of the city of Huntsville, the American Legion and former associates at NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration). Thomas Franklin interviewed Arthur Rudolph and wrote a series of articles in the Huntsville News that questioned the OSI (Office of Special Investigations) investigation these were later used as the basis for An American in Exile: The Story of Arthur Rudolph.

During 1985, Representative Bill Green of New York introduced a bill to strip Arthur Rudolph of the NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) DSM (Distinguished Service Medal) and reintroduced it in 1987. Arthur Rudolph applied for a visa in 1989 to attend a 20th anniversary celebration of the first Moon landing, but was denied by the State Department. In May 1990 Representative James Traficant of Ohio submitted a motion calling for hearings to determine whether the OSI (Office of Special Investigations) was justified in its actions or violated the rights of Arthur Rudolph. The motion failed to receive any co-sponsors and was referred to the Subcommittee on Immigration, Refugees, and International Law in June, with no further action taken. In July the Rudolphs entered Canada for a reunion with their daughter. Since the OSI (Office of Special Investigations) had placed Arthur Rudolph on a watch list, Arthur Rudolph was detained and left Canada of his own accord. Ernst Zündel and Paul Fromm attempted to support Arthur Rudolph with demonstrations. After Arthur Rudolph left, an immigration hearing was held in his absence, Arthur Rudolph was represented by Barbara Kulaszka, but Canadian authorities ruled that Arthur Rudolph could not return to Canada. Arthur Rudolph sued to regain his United States citizenship, but the case was dismissed in 1993.

During November 1996, Martha Rudolph wrote to Henry Hyde, then chairman of the House Judiciary Committee. She stated that her husband had signed the agreement after coercion and duress by the OSI (Office of Special Investigations) and that she was dismayed by the House resolutions to strip her husband of the DSM (Distinguished Service Medal). Arthur Rudolph continued to be defended by Pat Buchanan, Lyndon LaRouche and Friedwardt Winterberg.

Arthur Rudolph married Martha Therese Kohls on 3 October 1935 in Berlin. Arthur Rudolph and his wife retired to San Jose, California to be near their daughter. Soon after moving, he had a heart attack and a triple bypass. Arthur Rudolph died in Hamburg on 1 January 1996 from heart attack.

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Hans-Ulrich Rudel

Hans-Ulrich Rudel

Career:

Branch: Luftwaffe
Born: 2 July 1916 in Konradswaldau, Kingdom of Prussia.
Died: 18 December 1982 in Rosenheim, Germany

Ranks:
Generaloberst
General der Flieger
General der Infanterie
Generalleutnant
Generalmajor
Oberst
Oberstleutnant
Major
Hauptmann
Oberleutnant
Leutnant
Fähnrich

Decorations:
Front Flying Clasp of the Luftwaffe in Gold and Diamonds with Pennant
Ehrenpokal der Luftwaffe 20 October 1941
Wound Badge in Gold
Combined Pilots-Observation Badge in Gold with Diamonds
German Cross in Gold 2 December 1941
Iron Cross 1939
2nd Class 10 November 1939
1st Class 18 July 1941
Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Golden Oak Leaves, Swords and Diamonds
Knight's Cross 6 January 1942
Oak Leaves 14 April 1943
Swords 25 November 1943
Diamonds 29 March 1944
Golden Oak Leaves on 29 December 1944
Hungarian Gold Medal of Bravery 14 January 1945
Italian Silver Medal of Military Valor

Commands:

Personal Information:

Hans-Ulrich Rudel was born on 2 July 1916 in Konradswaldau, Kingdom of Prussia and became one of the most famous Stuka dive-bomber pilot during World War II and a member of the National Socialist Party. The most highly decorated German serviceman of the war, Hans-Ulrich Rudel was one of only 27 military men to be awarded the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves, Swords and Diamonds, and the only person to be awarded the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Golden Oak Leaves, Swords and Diamonds (Ritterkreuz des Eisernen Kreuzes mit goldenem Eichenlaub, Schwertern und Brillanten).

Hans-Ulrich Rudel flew 2,530 combat missions claiming a total of 2,000 targets destroyed including 800 vehicles, 519 tanks, 150 artillery pieces, a destroyer, two cruisers, one Soviet battleship, 70 landing craft, 4 armoured trains, several bridges and nine aircraft which Hans-Ulrich Rudel shot down. Hans-Ulrich Rudel, the son of Lutheran minister Johannes, was born in Konradswaldau (Silesia), Germany. Hans-Ulrich Rudel was raised in a number of different Silesian parishes. As a boy he was a poor scholar but a very keen sportsman. In August 1936, after his Abitur University preparatory high school diploma, Hans-Ulrich Rudel joined the Luftwaffe as an officer cadet, and began basic training at the School of Air Warfare at Wildpark-Werder.

During June 1938 Hans-Ulrich Rudel joined I./Sturzkampfgeschwader 168 in Graz as an officer senior cadet. Hans-Ulrich Rudel had difficulty learning the new techniques and was considered unsuitable for combat flying, so on 1 January 1939, Hans-Ulrich Rudel was transferred to the Reconnaissance Flying School at Hildesheim for training in operational reconnaissance. Hans-Ulrich Rudel was promoted to Lieutenant (Second Lieutenant) on that date. After completing training Hans-Ulrich Rudel was posted to the Fernaufklärungsgruppe 121 (Long-range Reconnaissance Group) at Prenzlau.

Hans-Ulrich Rudel was a teetotal and non-smoker. His fellow pilots coined the phrase Hans-Ulrich Rudel, er trinkt nur Sprudel (Hans-Ulrich Rudel, he drinks only sparkling water).

During the Polish Campaign at the start of World War II, Hans-Ulrich Rudel flew as an observer on long-range reconnaissance missions over Poland from Breslau. Hans-Ulrich Rudel earned the Iron Cross 2nd Class on 11 October 1939. After a number of requests Hans-Ulrich Rudel was reassigned to dive bombing, joining an Aviation Training Regiment at Crailsheim and then Hans-Ulrich Rudel was assigned to his previous unit, I./Sturzkampfgeschwader 3 (StG 3), at Caen in May 1940. Hans-Ulrich Rudel spent the Battle of Britain as an Oberleutnant (First Lieutenant) in a non-combat role. Still regarded as a poor pilot, Hans-Ulrich Rudel was sent to a Reserve Flight at Graz for dive bombing training. Assigned to I./Sturzkampfgeschwader 2 (StG 2), based at Molaoi, his poor reputation, by then unjustified, preceded him and Hans-Ulrich Rudel also spent the invasion of Crete in a noncombat role.

Ju 87 G-2 Kanonenvogel with its twin Bordkanone BK 3.7, 37 mm guns. Hans-Ulrich Rudel flew his first four combat missions on 23 June 1941, during the German invasion of the Soviet Union. His demonstrated piloting skills earned him the Iron Cross 1st Class on 18 July 1941. In 23 September 1941, Hans-Ulrich Rudel and another Stuka pilot sank the Soviet battleship Marat, during an air attack on Kronstadt harbour in the Leningrad area, with hits to the bow using 1,000 kg bombs. By the end of December, Hans-Ulrich Rudel had flown his 400th mission and in January 1942 received the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross. During February 1943, Hans-Ulrich Rudel became the first pilot in history to fly 1,000 sorties. Around this time Hans-Ulrich Rudel also started flying antitank operations with the 'Kanonenvogel', or G, version of the Ju-87, through the Battle of Kursk, and into the autumn of 1943, claiming 100 tanks destroyed.

During March 1944, Hans-Ulrich Rudel was already Gruppenkommandeur (group commander) of III./StG 2 appointed on 19 July 1943 and had reached 1,800 operations. At that time Hans-Ulrich Rudel claimed 202 tanks destroyed.

During March 1944 Hans-Ulrich Rudel may have been involved in aerial combat with the Hero of the Soviet Union, Lev Shestakov. Shestakov failed to return from this mission and was posted as missing in action. From Hans-Ulrich Rudel's memoirs:

? he shot down by Ernst Gadermann Hans-Ulrich Rudel's rear gunner, or did he go down because of the backwash from my engine during these tight turns? It doesn't matter. My headphones suddenly exploded in confused screams from the Russian radio the Russians have observed what happened and something special seems to have happened. From the Russian radio-messages, we discover that this was a very famous Soviet fighter pilot, more than once appointed as Hero of the Soviet Union. I should give him credit: he was a good pilot.

During November 1944, Hans-Ulrich Rudel was wounded in the thigh and flew subsequent missions with his leg in a plaster cast. On 8 February 1945, a 40 mm shell hit his aircraft. Hans-Ulrich Rudel was badly wounded in the right foot and crash landed inside German lines. His life was saved by his observer Ernst Gadermann who stemmed the bleeding, but Hans-Ulrich Rudel's leg was amputated below the knee. Hans-Ulrich Rudel returned to operations on 25 March 1945, claiming 26 more tanks destroyed before the end of the war. Determined not to fall into Soviet hands, Hans-Ulrich Rudel led three Ju 87s and four FW 190s westward from Bohemia in a 2 hour flight. Landing at Kitzingen airfield, held by the US 405th Fighter Group, Hans-Ulrich Rudel had his men lock the brakes and collapse the landing gear to make the aircraft useless to the Americans and to render the airfield unusable by blocking the airstrip. Then Hans-Ulrich Rudel surrendered to U.S. Forces, on 8 May 1945.

Eleven months in prisoner of war camps followed. Released by the Americans, Hans-Ulrich Rudel moved to Argentina in 1948.

According to official Luftwaffe figures, Hans-Ulrich Rudel flew some 2,530 combat missions a world record. Hans-Ulrich Rudel was never shot down by another pilot, only by antiaircraft artillery. Hans-Ulrich Rudel was shot down or forced to land 32 times, several times behind enemy lines.

According to his autobiography, on one occasion, after trying a landing to rescue two downed novice Stuka crewmen and then not being able to take off again due to the muddy conditions, Hans-Ulrich Rudel and his three companions, while being chased for 6 km by Soviet soldiers, made their way down a steep cliff by sliding down trees, then swam 600 meters across the icy Dniester river, during which his rear gunner, Knight's Cross holder Hentschel, succumbed to the cold water and drowned. Several miles further towards the German lines, the three survivors were then captured by Soviets, but Hans-Ulrich Rudel, knowing there was a bounty on his head, again made a run for it. Despite being barefoot and in soaking clothes, getting shot in his shoulder, and being hunted by several hundred pursuers with dog packs, he eventually managed to make his way back to his own lines.

In total, Hans-Ulrich Rudel was wounded five times and rescued six stranded aircrew from enemy territory, although the two mentioned above were recaptured. The vast majority of his missions were spent piloting the various models of the Junkers Ju 87, though by the end of the war, Hans-Ulrich Rudel often flew the ground-attack variant of the Fw 190.

Hans-Ulrich Rudel went on to become the most decorated serviceman of all the fighting arms of the German armed forces the only person more highly decorated was Hermann Göring who was awarded the Grand Cross of the Iron Cross, earning by early 1945 the Wound Badge in Gold, the German Cross in Gold, the Pilots and Observer's Badge with Diamonds, and the Front Flying Clasp of the Luftwaffe with 2,000 sorties in Diamonds. Hans-Ulrich Rudel was the only recipient of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Golden Oak Leaves, Swords, and Diamonds the highest-scoring ace of World War II, Erich Hartmann, also held the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves, Swords, and Diamonds but his Oak Leaves were not gold. Hans-Ulrich Rudel was also promoted to Oberst (Colonel) at this time.

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Hellmuth von Ruckteschell

Hellmuth von Ruckteschell

Career:

Branch: Kaiserliche Marine / Reichsmarine / Kriegsmarine
Born: 23 March 1890 in Hamburg, Germany.
Died: 24 September 1948 in Fuhlsbüttel prison, Hamburg, Germany.

Ranks:
Kapitän zur See
Fregattenkapitän
Korvettenkapitän
Kapitänleutnant
Oberleutnant zur See
Leutnant zur See
Oberfähnrich zur See
Fähnrich zur See

Decorations:

Commands:
UB-34
Takes command on 1 September 1917
Ends command on 30 March 1918

U-54
Takes command on 23 March 1918
Ends command on 11 November 1918

Widder
Takes command on 30 November 1939
Ends command on 31 October 1941

Michel
Takes command on 7 September 1941
Ends command on 17 October 1943

Personal Information:

Hellmuth von Ruckteschell was born on 23 March 1890 in Hamburg, Germany and was a serving member of the Kriegsmarine during World War II and managed to attain the rank of Kapitän zur See and went on to command the following UB-34, U-54, Widder and Michel.

Hellmuth von Ruckteschell joined Kaiserliche Marine as a Seekadett on 1 April 1909 and went to naval school he then transferred to the U-boats arm and trained as watch officer on U-3 and U-57 until he was given his own command on 1 September 1917.

During the First World War Hellmuth von Ruckteschell was given the command of the U-boat UB-34 on 1 September 1917 and remained in command until 30 March 1918 he was then transferred to the U-boat U-54 on 23 March 1918 until 11 November 1918. Hellmuth von Ruckteschell was recalled to duty in the Kriegsmarine during 1939 and he was given command of the auxiliary cruiser Widder on 30 November 1939 until 31 October 1941 he was then transferred to the auxiliary cruiser Michel on 7 September 1941 until 17 October 1943, Hellmuth von Ruckteschell was later relieved of command due to health reasons.

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Richard Rothe-Roth

Richard Rothe-Roth

Career:

Branch: Kaiserliche Marine / Reichsmarine / Kriegsmarine
Born: 24 March 1898 in Würzburg, Germany.
Died: 9 November 1972 in Munich, Germany.

Ranks:
Konteradmiral 1 April 1944
Kommodore
Kapitän zur See 1 October 1940
Fregattenkapitän 1 April 1939
Korvettenkapitän 1 October 1935
Kapitänleutnant 1 August 1929
Oberleutnant zur See 1 April 1922
Leutnant zur See 10 January 1920
Oberfähnrich zur See
Fähnrich zur See 17 September 1917

Decorations:

Commands:
G10
Takes command on 26 September 1925
Ends command on 8 February 1926

S19
Takes command on 26 September 1928
Ends command on 30 September 1930

Admiral Scheer
Takes command on 1 February 1943
Ends command on 4 April 1944

Personal Information:

Richard Rothe-Roth was born on 24 March 1898 in Würzburg, Germany and was a serving member of the Kriegsmarine during World War II and managed to attain the rank of Konteradmiral and went on to command the following G10, S19 and Admiral Scheer.

Richard Rothe-Roth joined Kaiserliche Marine as a Seekadett on 3 October 1916 and went to naval school and continued his training on board heavy cruiser Freya.

Richard Rothe-Roth was given the command of the torpedo boat G10 on 6 September 1925 and remained in command until 8 February 1926 he was then transferred to the torpedo boat S19 on 26 September 1928 until 30 September 1930 many years later he was given command of the pocket battleship Admiral Scheer on 1 February 1943 until 4 April 1944.

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