Thursday, May 26, 2016

SS-Brigadeführer Otto Kumm

SS-Standartenführer Otto Kumm, seen here as a commander of SS-Panzergrenadier-Regiment "Der Führer" / SS-Panzergrenadier-Division "Das Reich" and later, as SS-Brigadeführer, became the third commander of the 7. SS-Freiwilligen-Gebirgs-Division "Prinz Eugen" (the first two being Artur "Papa" Phleps and Carl von Oberkamp). He received the Iron Cross First and Second Class during the French campaign, was awarded Knight’s Cross for his gallantry in 16 February 1942, the Oakleaves on 6 April 1943, and the Swords on 17 March 1945. His career ended as the last commander of the 1. SS-Panzer-Division "Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler". Kumm is best remembered for his exploits with the Das Reich Division in Russia. In February 1942, he was commander of the Der Führer Regiment of the division, which was battered by savage Soviet assaults in the area of Rzhev. When the attacks had stopped, Kumm took his regiment to divisional headquarters. There he met Generalfeldmarschall Walter Model, commander of the 9. Armee, who told him: “I know what your regiment has been through, Kumm, but I still can’t do without it. How strong is it now?" Kumm then pointed to the window: "My regiment is on parade outside." In the cold stood 35 men, the remains of a unit that had gone into combat 2000 strong...

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