Helmut Staedke

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Helmut Staedke
Generalmajor Helmut Staedke I.jpg
Birth name Helmut Max Staedke
Birth date 30 August 1905(1905-08-30)
Place of birth München, Kingdom of Bavaria, German Empire
Death date 3 September 1974 (aged 69)
Place of death Tübingen, Baden-Württemberg, West Germany
Allegiance  Weimar Republic
 National Socialist Germany
Service/branch War Ensign of the Reichswehr, 1919 - 1935.png Reichswehr
Balkenkreuz.jpg Heer
Years of service 1924–1945
Rank Generalleutnant
Commands held World War I
World War II
Awards German Cross in Gold
Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross
Relations ∞ 1933 Anneliese Schweickhardt

Helmut Max Staedke (sometimes Städke; 30 August 1905 – 3 September 1974) was a German officer of the Reichswehr and the Wehrmacht, finally Generalleutnant, division commander and recipient of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross during World War II.

Military career (chronology)

Wilhelm Ritter von Leeb and Helmut Staedke
From left to right: German Generals Ernst Philipp, Hans Schlemmer and Helmut Staedke on Monday, 5 June 1944, in Bobruisk, Mahilyow Voblast, Belarus.


Letter (1968)
  • 24.4.1924 Entry into the training battery (Ausbildungs-Batterie) of the 7th Artillery Regiment (Erlangen, Bavaria)
    • he later served in the 6th (Landsberg am Lech) and in the 5th Battery (München)
  • 1933 1st Battery/4th Observation Battalion (Beobachtungs-Abteilung 4)
  • 1934 2nd Battery/4th Observation Battalion
    • later that year transferred to the 3rd Observation (Jüterbog)


  • 15.10.1935 Commander of the 1st Battery/Observation Trainings Battalion (Beobachtungs-Lehr-Abteilung) in Jüterbog
  • 6.10.1936 Commanded to the War Academy (Kriegsakademie Berlin)
  • 10.10.1938 Ib (Second General Staff Officer) of the 4. Panzerdivision (Würzburg)

World War II

    • 9.9.1939 to 11.9.1939 at the same time Ia (First General Staff Officer) of the 4. Panzer-Division
  • 15.2.1940 In the General Staff of the 6. Panzerdivision
  • 20.9.1940 Führerreserve OKH (subordinated to the Chef des Generalstabes des Heeres)
  • 8.10.1940 Tactics instructor at the General Staff courses
  • 1.4.1941 In the General Staff of the Heeresgruppe C
  • 22.6.1941 In the General Staff of the Heeresgruppe Nord
  • 11.8.1941 Ia (First General Staff Officer) of the 20. Panzerdivision
  • 1.10.1942 Führerreserve OKH (again subordinated to the Chef des Generalstabes des Heeres); commanded to the Quartermaster General (Generalquartiermeister)
  • 30.1.1943 Chief of the General Staff of the XXXV. Armeekorps under Generaloberst Dr. Lothar Rendulic
  • 6.9.1943 Führerreserve OKH (subordinated to the Heerespersonalamt; HPA)
  • 1.10.1943 Chief of the General Staff of the 9. Armee under Walter Model, Josef Harpe, Hans Jordan, Nikolaus von Vormann and Smilo Freiherr von Lüttwitz
    • After the AOK 9 had already developed the idea of ​​the "Children's Villages" in 1943, Staedke started a great initiative to take thousands of suffering children and adolescents to the Reich during the last months of the occupation in Belarus. Around April/May 1944, he encouraged the so-called "Heuaktion": hay stands for homeless, parental, unaccounted for. Between 30,000 and 50,000 children aged between ten and fourteen were to be brought into the Reich to relieve the military administration in the occupied territories of childcare and, on the other hand, to feed the children. Through the Soviet main attack on 22 June 1944 in Mittelabschnitt, the "Heuaktion" for the most part was made impossible. Ultimately, only 2,500 to 4,500 children were rescued.
  • 30.11.1944 Chief of the General Staff of the Heeresgruppe G
  • 30.3.1945 Führerreserve OKH (HPA)
  • 5.4.1945 Commanded to the 18th Division Leader Course (DFL) in Bad Wiessee (with Georg Friedrich Hans Seegers and others)[1]
  • 26.4.1945 Commander of the 198. Infanterie-Division
  • 28.4.1945 He was taken prisoner of war by US invasion troops in Weilheim (Upper Bavaria)[2]



Helmut was the son of bookseller Max Staedke and his wife Rosa, née Bauer (d. 6 December 1937). Father Max, already a company co-owner, bought the medical bookstore (J. F. Lehmann's medizinische Buchhandlung Lehmann & Staedke in München) belonging to the publishing house of Julius Friedrich Lehmann, a cousin of his wife Rosa. It was then named J. F. Lehmann's Medicinische Buchhandlung Max Staedke (München). Since July 1894, he was member of the Börsenverein der Deutschen Buchhändler zu Leipzig.[3]


On 26 June 1933, Oberleutnant Staedke married his fiancée Anneliese Schweickhardt. The couple had three daughters born 1934, 1936, 1938 and c. 1940.



  • 24.4.1924 Fahnenjunker (Officer Candidate)
  • 1.9.1926 Fähnrich (Officer Cadet)
  • 1.9.1927 Oberfähnrich (Senior Officer Cadet)
  • 20.12.1927 Leutnant (2nd Lieutenant)
    • with Rank Seniority (RDA) from 1.12.1927
  • 1.5.1930 Oberleutnant (1st Lieutenant)


  • 1.5.1935 Hauptmann (Captain)
    • 1938 changed to Hauptmann i. G. (in the General Staff)
  • 1.10.1940 Major
    • 18.3.1941 received new RDA from 1.2.1940
  • 1.4.1942 Oberstleutnant (Lieutenant Colonel)
  • 20.4.1943 Oberst (Colonel) mit RDA vom 1.3.1943
  • 1.4.1944 Generalmajor
  • 20.4.1945 Generalleutnant

Awards and decorations

  • Wehrmacht Long Service Award (Wehrmacht-Dienstauszeichnung), 4th to 3rd Class on 2 October 1936
  • Iron Cross (1939), 2nd and 1st Class
    • EK II on 22 September 1939
    • EK I on 2 June 1940
  • Eastern Front Medal on 15 August 1942
  • German Cross in Gold on 15 June 1942 [other sources state 8 June] as Major im Generalstab (Major in General Staff) and Ia of the 20. Panzer-Division
  • Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross on 14 August 1943 as Oberst im Generalstab (Colonel in General Staff) and Chief of the General Staff of the XXXV. Armeekorps/2. Panzerarmee/Heeresgruppe Mitte

Writings (post-WWII)

  • Gedanken zur Gliederung einer modernen Wehrmacht, 1954
  • Zeitgemäße Verteidigungsbereitschaft, study with a statement by Generaloberst a. D. Georg-Hans Reinhardt (1887-1963), 1956