ϟϟ-Hauptsturmführer der Waffen-SS Wittmann

SS-Hauptsturmführer Michael Wittmann
During SS-Hauptsturmführer Michael Wittmann´s (April 22 1914 – August 8 1944) many campaigns both on the Eastern front and in the West, Wittmann was to make a name for himself with his exceptional skill and bravery, and was highly respected both by friend and foe alike. While his skill had been recognised on the harsh battlefields on the Eastern Front, his exploits during the Normandy campaign of 1944 - and the famous assault of elements of the British 7th Armoured Division, during the Battle of Villers-Bocage on June 13 1944 - were to elevate him to the status of a legend. While in command of a single Panzerkampfwagen VI Tiger he destroyed up to 14 tanks and 15 personnel carriers along with 2 anti-tank guns within the space of 15 minutes. Wittmann was credited with the destruction of 138 tanks and 132 anti-tank guns, along with an unknown number of other armoured vehicles making him one of the worlds top scoring Panzer aces, together with Hauptmann Johannes Bölter (Schwere Panzer-Abteilung 502), SS-Oberscharführer Ernst Barkmann (2.SS-Panzer-Division Das Reich), Lieutenant Otto Carius (Schwere Panzer-Abteilung 502) and Feldwebel Kurt Knispel (12.Panzer-Division) who was the top scoring ace of World War II with 168, possibly as high as 195, tank kills.
Wittmann was killed on August 8 1944 while taking part in a counterattack ordered by SS-Brigadeführer Kurt Meyer (12.SS-Panzer-Division Hitlerjugend) to retake tactically important high ground near the town of Saint-Aignan de Cramesnil. There is however considerable conflict surrounding the exact details of Wittman's death. The unmarked field grave of Tiger n°007's crew was discovered in 1983. It was possible to identify the remains by Wittmann's dental records and SS-Unterscharführer Heinrich Reimers (driver) identification tag. They were then reinterred together at the German war cemetery of La Cambe in France. Units: 1.SS-Panzer-Division Leibstandarte SS “Adolf Hitler” and Schwere SS-Panzer-Abteilung 101. Awards among others: Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves and Swords. Credit: Wikipedia. Image: Michael Wittmann as SS-Obersturmführer at Normandy on June 22 1944. N.A.R.A.

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