ϟϟ-Panzer-Aufklärungs-Abteilung Leibstandarte ϟϟ

SS-Obersturmführer Leidreiter
An unidentified SS-Grenadier in Normandy
SS-Obersturmführer Hans-Martin Leidreiter (September 14 1920 — April 6 2007) served in 1.SS Division Leibstandarte SS, a veteran since 1938. When Kurt Meyer left for the new Hitlerjugend Division in April 1943, the commander Gustav Knittel took over the reconnaissance battalion and Leidreiter became his adjutant. Leidreiter showed great bravery in the eastern front and was awarded the German Cross in Gold on 1 June 1944. He continued to serve under Knittel as company commander when the Leibstandarte SS was shipped to Normandy. When the Leibstandarte surrendered to the Americans in Austria in May 1945, Leidreiter decided to evade capture. He made it to the west on foot, accompanied by his driver August Rauber. After the war he became an assistant teacher and rose to the position of deputy leader of the Agricultural- and Silviculture School in Titisee-Neustadt. Credit: Harro of the Axis History Forum. Right image: SS-Obersturmführer Hans-Martin Leidreiter. Public domain. Left image: Screenshot from Die Deutsche Wochenschau showing an SS panzergrenadier during the early days of the invasion. The grenadier has never been identified, although some sources identifies him as a member of the Leibstandarte SS reconnaissance battalion. He is wearing the rare sniper face veil around his neck and holding a Browning Hi-Power pistol. The Leibstandarte SS Division's manpower strength was 19,691 men in June 1944. Public domain.

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