Who is this Ardennes soldier?

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Harro
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Re: Who is this Ardennes soldier?

Post by Harro » 18 Dec 2016 15:10

Please read the topic. No, there's no definite proof for any of the names including Tragarsky.

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Re: Who is this Ardennes soldier?

Post by PatrickBateman » 20 Dec 2016 10:43

I have read the whole topic but it ended without a official name, so I thought maybe in the meantime somebody found out his real name.

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Re: Who is this Ardennes soldier?

Post by offizier1916 » 21 Jun 2017 16:39

Hello

very interesting thread. even tough those photos are "staged" after the actual battle, those faces reflected the long and hard war those soldiers fought. they were lucky enough to survive until dec. 44......regarding those two "rottenführer" (probably Prieß and Gilbert), Prieß died in January 45? The Untersturmführer in March 45. What about Gilbert?

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Re: Who is this Ardennes soldier?

Post by Harro » 21 Jun 2017 16:43

offizier1916 wrote:.regarding those two "rottenführer" (probably Prieß and Gilbert), Prieß died in January 45? The Untersturmführer in March 45. What about Gilbert?
Again: they're neither Priess nor Gilbert. Both were SS-Unterscharführer in December 1944 whereas the men in the photos are SS-Rottenführer. Gilbert survived the war.

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Re: Who is this Ardennes soldier?

Post by offizier1916 » 21 Jun 2017 16:49

ok thx. This one rottenführer already had an amout of prestegious medals, but this could not help to identify the person by veterans?

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Re: Who is this Ardennes soldier?

Post by Harro » 21 Jun 2017 16:59

No, Merscher identified them as Priess and Gilbert but this had to be corrected when the ranks turned out to be wrong. "Gilbert" is also often identified as Elimar Schneider (even by himself) but he wasn't a Rttf, did not have the awards and was in a unit that was never anywhere near Poteau. To the best of my knowledge they are from the Stabskompanie of the SS-Panzer-Aufklärungs-Abteilung 1 LSSAH and most likely scouted towards Poteau while Knittel was meeting with Hansen in Recht. Stiewe was Knittel's aide and the Rottenfhr in the trenchcoat can be seen riding an SdKfz 234/1 from Stabskompanie earlier that morning when they left Born.

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Re: Who is this Ardennes soldier?

Post by offizier1916 » 21 Jun 2017 17:08

Hi thank you for your answer. Its "funny", that Elimar Schneider could not recognize himself on the fotos.




On the other Hand...fotos are always a special thing. Regarding the famous Waffen-SS soldier called "Winter-Fritz", i really though it could be Maeger after comparing photos from the battle of the bulge and images fronm the documantary 60 years later
Last edited by offizier1916 on 21 Jun 2017 17:23, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Who is this Ardennes soldier?

Post by Harro » 21 Jun 2017 17:18

BIK-7283.jpg
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Re: Who is this Ardennes soldier?

Post by offizier1916 » 21 Jun 2017 17:24

i dont know if this is elimar schneider, but i think you can see similarities in their faces/facial structure/nose.

ImageImage

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Re: Who is this Ardennes soldier?

Post by Harro » 17 Dec 2017 11:10

offizier1916 wrote:i dont know if this is elimar schneider, but i think you can see similarities in their faces/facial structure/nose.

ImageImage
Other photos clearly show that this is an SS-Rottenführer with the Nahkampfspange. Schneider never held that rank, never won that award and in addition was in the wrong division.

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Re: Who is this Ardennes soldier?

Post by offizier1916 » 17 Dec 2017 11:25

Can you see the first photo? I cant (anymore).

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Harro
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Re: Who is this Ardennes soldier?

Post by Harro » 17 Dec 2017 11:28

Neither can I but I recal that it was a photo of the real Schneider? Nevertheless, rank, awards and unit rule him out for the Poteau photo

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Re: Who is this Ardennes soldier?

Post by offizier1916 » 17 Dec 2017 11:45

Image
Was it this one? You are right, it cant be the ardennes soldier, becaus this photo was taken in nov 44.
Source: https://www.malgre-nous.eu/schneider-elimar/
But the similarity in face and nose are strange

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Re: Who is this Ardennes soldier?

Post by offizier1916 » 17 Dec 2017 21:13

Here is a very small clip where you can see all 3 soldiers we are talking about. Battle hardened, exhausted, tired of war. If they survived by luck the ardennes offensive..... the hungary operation has yet to come.... both soldoers arw ckearly rottenführer have IC 1st class and CCC

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=WHf1xT8TSs8

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Re: Who is this Ardennes soldier?

Post by Harro » 07 Mar 2018 22:38

28685500_858176871031262_3399218072238760090_n.jpg
Since this guy wears hardly any equipment I think we can rule him out as one of Hansen's grenadiers and the Fallschirmjäger attached to Kampfgruppe Peiper took a different route and were never anywhere near Poteau so I think we can rule them out too.

In fact the photos and newsreel of this guy show him in the company of Knittel's aide SS-Ustuf. Siegfried Stiewe and several members of the Fahrradzug (bicycle platoon) of the Stabskompanie, SS-PzAA1. Im quite sure that his Luftwaffe uniform identifies him as part of the huge number of ground personnel that was transferred from the Luftwaffe to the Leibstandarte to make up for the huge losses the decimated division had suffered in Normandy. A massive 25 percent of the SS-PzAA1 consisted of Luftwaffe personnel at that time. At that time - weeks before the Bulge, the SS lacked the means to provide proper Waffen-SS uniforms for all these men and many were still in their Luftwaffe gear when the Ardennes Offensive started - and even this was a hodgepodge of Luftwaffe items because the airforce was also on its last legs.

Hard to provide conclusive evidence but if I may provide a hypothesis: I think he got his M1 carabine and American ammo pouch the previous day from the supply dump near Honsfeld.

In the morning of the 17th of December 1944, members of the Leibstandarte were photographed by SS PK-Berichter Max Büschel while they ransacked this US Army supply dump near Honsfeld. There is conclusive evidence that on that day part of the Stabskompanie (HQ company) of the SS-PzAA1 used Rollbahn D between Halschlag and Losheimergraben before taking the road over Honsfeld, Heppenbach and Amel to reach the village of Born in the afternoon where they linked up with the rest of Schnelle Gruppe Knittel (which had used Rollbahn E) and remained there for the night.

At Born an Sd.Kfz. 234/1 from this Stabskompanie was photographed with a load of men from the Fahrradzug hitching a ride on its engine deck. This platoon was also part of the Stabskompanie and a veteran from this platoon confirmed that indeed they switched from their bicycles to the 234's. Among the men on the engine deck is the SS-Rttf later photographed at Poteau.

The Stabskompanie left Born in the morning of the 18th and drove over Kaiserbaracke - where the 2. and 3. Kompanie had secured the crossroads - to the village of Recht where Knittel met with Hansen. IMO, that's how photographer Büschel, cameraman Schäfer, Knittel's aide Stiewe and those 234's carrying soldiers from the Fahrradzug ended up at the famous "ambush scene" near Poteau. While the meeting between Knittel and Hansen took place, I think the Stabskompanie drove up the road to Poteau to prepare their further advance behind Hansen's battlegroup. Here Büschel took advantage of them loitering around waiting for Knittel to take pics of them and some of Hansen's grenadiers.

But while Knittel talked with Hansen he received new orders from Mohnke: Peiper had managed a breakthrough at Stavelot and the Schnelle Gruppe was to follow him to La Gleize. He, Goltz, the 234's and their passengers from the Fahrradzug doubled back over Kaiserbaracke and so did Büschel with Goltz and his men - resulting in the photos taken at Kaiserbaracke where members of the 3. Kompanie acted out the famous Schwimmwagen pics. The 250's from the 2. Kompanie can be seen in the background. Note that the first pics Büschel took at the Kaiserbaracke crossroads show Goltz in his Schwimmwagen - for me that's further evidence that Büschel arrived there with Golz.

After Büschel and Schäfer left Kaiserbaracke they caught up with Knittel in la Vaulx Richard. It's possible they accompanied Knittel to La Gleize before moving on to Stoumont on the 19th while Knittel returned to Stavelot. Again, I cannot provide conclusive evidence for this senario but I think it is very plausible.
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