Gerd von Brauchitsch

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Gerd von Brauchitsch
Gerd von Brauchitsch.jpg
Captain (Hauptmann) von Brauchitsch
Birth name Gerd Bernhard Alfred von Brauchitsch
Birth date 30 May 1914
Place of birth Charlottenburg near Berlin, Province of Brandenburg, Kingdom of Prussia, German Empire
Death date 6 December 1974 (aged 60)
Place of death Eutin, Schleswig-Holstein, West Germany
Allegiance  National Socialist Germany
Service/branch Balkenkreuz.jpg Heer
Years of service 1935–1945
Rank Major
Battles/wars World War I
World War II
Awards Iron Cross
Relations ∞ 1941 Hulda von Hagen
∞ c. 1958 Christine Marie-Esther Klara Eva-Marie von Woikowsky-Biedau

Gerd Bernhard Alfred von Brauchitsch (30 May 1914 – 6 December 1974) was a German officer of the Wehrmacht, finally Major and adjutant in a Panzer corps in World War II.


Gerd von Brauchitsch entered the Wehrmacht as Fahnenjunker (officer candidate) on 1 April 1935 and was sworn in on 9 April 1935. At this time he was serving in the Kraftfahr-Abteilung Stettin under Colonel Karl Albert Kurt Brennecke. As a Fähnrich (officer cadet), he was sent to the Wehrmacht war school. Before the war, he served in the Aufklärungs-Abteilung (mot.) 3 in Stahnsdorf. The motorized reconnaissance unit experienced its first use during the libeartion of the Sudetenland in October 1938. During the Poland Campaign, he was platoon leader (Zugführer) in the Kradschützen-Bataillon 3 (Motorcycle Rifle Battalion 3) as part of the 3. Panzer-Division. At the time of the Battle of France, he was ordnance officer and at the beginning of the Operation Barbarossa adjutant of the Kradschützen-Bataillon 3.

On 23 June 1941, he suffered from kidney failure and was transported to a military hospital where he would have to stay until 15 October 1941. He then was named company commander in the Kradschützen-Ersatz-Bataillon 3, a replacement battalion, which he stayed until 15 September 1942, becoming commander of the Kradschützen-Ersatz-Bataillon 3 from 16 September 1942 to 7 December 1942. After six months of service as captain for military career advice, he was name d company commander in the Panzergrenadier-Regiment 3 under Lieutenant Colonel Ernst Wellmann (1904–1970) on 10 June 1943. On 9 July 1943, he was severly wounded and spent over three months until 14 October 1943 in a hospital and undergoing rehabilitation. After a short leave, he was named leader (Bataillonsführer) of the 1st Battalion/Panzergrenadier-Regiment 394 (3. Panzer-Division) on 20 October 1943. On 31 December 1943, he was named leader (Bataillonsführer) of the 1st Battalion/Panzergrenadier-Regiment 114 (6. Panzer-Division).

On 13 March 1944, he was placed in the Führerreserve OKH (leaders reserve) and was commanded 14. course for senior adjutants (14. Lehrgang für höhere Adjutanten), which he completed on 20 May 1944. On 13 June 1944, he was transferred to the staff of the 5. Panzer-Division as adjutant. He was certified as suitable to become a regimental leader, but his kidney disease prevented him from doing so. On 30 December 1944, he was transferred to the adjutant command of the XXXIX. Panzer-Korps under General der Panzertruppe Karl Decker. Major von Brauchitsch was named Korpsadjutant on 5 February 1945.


Gerd was the son of Generalfeldmarschall Walter von Brauchitsch (1881–1948) and his wife Elisabeth Bertha Welly, née von Karstedt (1881–1952). He had two siblings, brother Bernd Walter Achim would become Colonel (Oberst) of the Luftwaffe and Chefadjutant of Hermann Göring in WWII.


On 25 January 1941 at Gut Premslaff, 1st Lieutenant von Brauchitsch married his fiancée Hulda von Hagen (b. 1919), daughter of politician and lord of the manor Gustav Ernst Friedrich von Hagen (1877–1954) and his wife Hedwig, née von Zitzewitz (1885–1971). Hulda had five siblings, two of her older brothers were as officers of the Wehrmacht. Gerd and Hulda had three children, among them:

  • Alexander (b. 1941)
  • Constantin (b. 10 March 1947 in Augsburg)

The couple divorced 1958. On 19 September 1958, Hulda married Franz-Anton Hank (1899–1974), later, after another divorce, she married on 5 May 1970 widower Jürgen Wilhelm Günther von Zitzewitz (1911–1988), Major of the Wehrmacht and retired Lieutenant Colonel of the Bundeswehr. Gerd von Brauchitsch also married again, his wife would become Christine Marie-Esther Klara Eva-Marie von Woikowsky-Biedau (1928–2017). Esther von Brauchitsch lived until her death in Kesdorf near Eutin.


  • 20 April 1937 Leutnant (2nd Lieutenant) with Rank Seniority (RDA) from 1 April 1937
  • 30 September 1939 Oberleutnant (1st Lieutenant) with Rank Seniority (RDA) from 1 October 1939
  • 8 April 1942 Hauptmann (Captain) with Rank Seniority (RDA) from 1 April 1942
  • 1 June 1944 Major

Awards and decorations