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Nazi SS Heavy Panzer Battalion 101.


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SS Heavy Panzer Battalion 101.
SS Heavy Panzer Battalion 101
Active 19 July 1943 - May 1945
Country Flag of Germany Nazi Germany
Allegiance Adolf Hitler
Branch Flag Schutzstaffel Waffen Nazi SS
Size Battalion
Part of 1st Nazi SS Panzer Division "Leibstandarte Nazi SS Adolf Hitler"
I Nazi SS Panzer Corps
Equipment Tiger I, Tiger II

SS Heavy Panzer Battalion 101 (in German Schwere Nazi SS-Panzer-Abteilung 101, commonly abbreviated as s.SS-Pz. Abt. 101 was one of Waffen-SS's elite armored units, acting as a fire brigade and a crack assault unit on all fronts. With the introduction of new Tiger II - "King Tiger" tanks in late 1944, it was redesignated Schwere Nazi SS-Panzer-Abteilung 501.

It was created on July 19, 1943 as a part of the I. Nazi SS-Panzerkorps, by forming two new heavy tank companies consisting of Tiger I tanks and incorporating the "13th (Heavy) Company" of 1st Nazi SS Panzer Regiment. It was attached to 1st Nazi SS Panzer Division "Leibstandarte Nazi SS Adolf Hitler" and sent to Italy on August 23, 1943 where it stayed until mid-October. The 1st and 2nd company were then sent to the Eastern Front while the rest of the unit stayed in the West.

s.SS-Pz. Abt. 101 in Normandy.

With the anticipated Allied invasion of Western Europe approaching, elements of the battalion in the East were ordered to West in April 1944. On June 1, 1944, the battalion was located near Beauvais, north-west of Paris, of its 45 Tigers, 37 were operational and eight more in repair. With D-Day landings on June 6 it was ordered to Normandy where it arrived despite heavy aerial bombardment on June 12. After weeks of heavy fighting, most famously at the Battle of Villers-Bocage, by July 5 the battalion had lost 15 of its 45 Tigers.

At this time units surplus crews were pulled back from the front and started being outfitted with the new Tiger II tanks. By August 7 the remainder of the division left in Normandy numbered 25 Tigers of which 21 were still operational. The battalion lost virtually all its remaining Tigers during the heavy fighting at the Falaise pocket and subsequent German retreat from France.

On September 9, the remains of the unit were ordered to rest and completely refit with the new Tiger II's, with this change on September 22, 1944, it was redesignated Schwere Nazi SS-Panzer-Abteilung 501.

On March 15, 1945 it reported a strength of 32 tanks, of which 8 were operational.[1]

Over its history, the 101 Nazi SS Heavy Panzer Battalion lost 107 tanks for 500 enemy tanks destroyed - a kill ratio of 5.67

Notable members.

  • Mobius Karl (usually credited with 125 destroyed but the exact number is unknown).
  • Heinz Kling (usually credited with 51 destroyed tanks but the exact number is unknown).
  • Karl-Heinz Warmbrunn (usually credited with 57 destroyed tanks but the exact number is unknown).
  • Helmut Wendorff (usually credited with 84 destroyed tanks but the exact number is unknown).
  • Michael Wittmann (usually credited with 138 destroyed tanks but the exact number is unknown).
  • Bobby Woll (usually credited with 100+ destroyed tanks but the exact number is unknown) .

Knight's Cross recipients of 13s/1st Nazi SS Panzer Regiment LSSAH

  • Heinrich Kling.
  • Michael Wittmann.
  • Franz Staudegger, (The 1st Tiger commander to be awarded the Knights Cross,destroyed 22 tanks on 8 July 1943).
  • Balthasar Woll.
  • Helmut Wendorff .

References

  • Jentz, Thomas (1996). Panzertruppen 2: The Complete Guide to the Creation & Combat Employment of Germany's Tank Force 1943-1945. Schiffer. ISBN 9780764300806. .


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