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Author Topic: Kampfgruppe Walther at neerpelt bridgehead 13-17 september 1944  (Read 11568 times)
stoffel
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« on: 2 November 2008, 10:18:57 »
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Kampfgruppe Walther at Neerpelt (B) bridgehead
13-17 september 1944

Kampfgruppe Walther(xx)

On september 13 General Student sent his adjutant(major Schacht) to personally check the condition of the units at neerpelt.
Enemy armor was seen at La Colonie and the general had to stop the advance.
Based on Schachts reports Student decided to postpone the attack while waiting for better units.
The man in command of the Kampfgruppe would be a staffofficer named colonel Walther.

Kampfgruppe Walther was a typical example of the poor mans war the Germans had to fight.
Its structure and OOB would change several times during the battle, depending of the action.
For the upcoming assault on Neerpelt the kampfgruppe received the following units:

1 fallschirmjaegerregiment commanded col Von Hoffmann with 3 batallions fallschirmjaeger infantry and a Pak 40 unit with 8 guns.
This regiment was a training unit with poor equiped and poorly trained men, 2/3rd of its officers had no combatexperience.
1 SS infantryregiment (Heinke) with 2 batallions , Krause and Segler, panzergrenadiers from 9th SS division commanded by Siegler and Richter.
1 SS tankdestroyercompany with  jagdpanzer IVL70 (long barrelled 75mm guns) 15 vehicles commanded by SS officer Roestler.
1 battery 105 mm howitzers from 10th SS division
Von Der Heidte pararegiment 6 with 4 batallions infantry and a heavy weapons batallion with an 81mm mortar company, an antitankcompany with 4  x 125mm AT GUNS and 5 x quad 20mm airdefense guns.
This unit also had  well trained and higly effective officers and NCO's.
Luftwaffe penal batallion 6 with 4 rifle companies, they arrived from Italy and were of no use during combat.
The last unit to enter  the kampfgruppe was a luftwaffe airdefense unit with 2 x 88mm and 3 x 20mm guns.

Action:

The attack now took place at 15 september,

Von Heydtes unit was to form the spearhead , his unit was in an assembly area near Luyksgestel.
His objectives: secure La Colonie and advance to Heunels heath to capture the bridge there.
2 other batallions Segler and one of Von Hoffmans battalions commanded by major keutt acted as diversionally recon in force.
The 105 mm battery and the 88s were used for direct fire support.
Heavy rains kept allied planes on the ground but the British artillery was very accurate.
The constant barrages  took many casualties among the Germans.

Fallschirmjaeger reg 6 attacked northwest of La Colonie on 08.00.
They had support from Roestlers armor.
Around 0830 british artillery opened up and stopped the infantry advance.
Roestlers armor moved forward but the british artillery knocked out 3 of the precious tankdestroyers.
It proved to be imposssible to drive the British troops back and  kampfgruppe Walther went over to the defense.
The unit held a formidable bridgehead along the Hechtel-Valkenswaard road.
To his left 85th division and to the right the paratrooperdivision Erdmann.

On september 16 Student ordered the attack to be resumed.
Because the british troops slowly received reinforcements Walthers men did not like the prospect of attacking again.
Walther launched only some minor probes, waiting for the inevitable coming allied attack.
(Attached file is the operation made by Stoffel about this battle for CMAK)

Source:
It never snows in september
Standaard encyclopedie v/d 2de wereldoorlog
Germans in Normandy
Armageddon max Hastings

* Henk Kampfgruppe Walther 1.2.cmh (167.09 KB - downloaded 262 times.)
« Last Edit: 2 November 2008, 12:56:10 by Koen » Logged

My topics are about my personal opinion, my thoughts and what I think. They do not reflect the official opinion of the ministry of defense of the Netherlands.
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