Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Ritterkreuz Award Ceremony of Walter Rappholz

13 November 1944: SS-Obergruppenführer und General der Waffen-SS Matthias Kleinheisterkamp (Kommandierender General XI. SS-Armeekorps) decorates Oberfeldwebel Walter Rappholz - a Zugführer in Panzerjäger-Abteilung 616 (Selbstfahrlafette) - with a Ritterkreuz des Eisernen Kreuzes (Knight's Cross of the Iron Crosses). Rappholz himself already received the news for his awarding from 3 November 1944. He was actually serving in the 1.Kompanie / Panzerjägerabteilung 37, but was detached to kampfgruppe Warschnauer (commander Panzer-Pionier-Bataillon 37) in august 1944. Both Panzer-Pionier-Bataillon 37 and Panzerjäger-Abteilung 616 were part of the Kampfgruppe Warschnauer.. The kampfgruppe was formed to contain a Russian breakthrough near Sanok (40 km south-west of Przemysl), and continued a fighting retreat along the Polish-SLowak border. The actions that followed from this time earned Rappholz the Ritterkreuz. The pictures above was taken by Kriegsberichter Lucke.

Oberfeldwebel Walter Rappholz posed for the photograph while holding a flower bouquet after the Ritterkreuz award ceremony is finished.

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