Friday, January 4, 2019

Enemy Elite Friday: Erich Bärenfänger (Germany)

“On the night of the 29./30.06.1942 Oberleutnant Bärenfänger conducted a night attack on his own initiative against the bunker position South of 1658.  The attack was a success, and the result was decisive.  It enabled friendly forces to completely encircle and destroy those enemy forces in the Champagne ravine without excessive casualties.  Furthermore, the Regiment was given the opportunity to launch a successful attack against the bunker position near 1670 during the early morning of the following day.  This in turn allowed the 50. Division to thrust through to the Southeastern city edge of Sevastopol on the 30.06.1942 without having to endure any unexpectedly hard combat.”  from his Knight's Cross to the Iron Cross citation, awarded on 27 August 1942.
"Awarded for distinguishing himself through his tactical skill and bravery during the heavy combat along the Terek river and the subsequent withdrawal movements to the Kuban bridgehead."  from his Knight's Cross to the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves citation, awarded on 17 May 1943.
"During the time periods 13.-17.11. and 04.-06.12.1943 Bärenfänger and his men repulsed attack after attack on the Kerch peninsula.  Bärenfänger himself remained with his men despite receiving his 6th and 7th wounds during this time.  Later, when a new Soviet offensive began on the 10.01.1944, he personally led an attack that recaptured an important hill (125.6).  Another important and hotly contested hill (133.3) was held onto with bitter determination at the same time.  Both of these hills were located to the North of Kerch (specifically to the northeast of Bulganak)."  from his Knight's Cross to the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves and Swords citation, awarded on 23 January 1944.
Another capable enemy elite,

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