Kurt Meyer

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Kurt Meyer
Bundesarchiv Bild 101III-Ludwig-006-19, Kurt Meyer.jpg
Kurt Meyer
Nickname Panzer Meyer
Allegiance  Weimar Republic
 National Socialist Germany
Service/branch Flag Schutzstaffel.png Allgemeine SS / Waffen-SS
Years of service 1931–45
Rank SS-Brigadeführer Collar Rank.png SS-Brigadeführer und Generalmajor der Waffen-SS
Commands held 1. SS-Panzer-Division Leibstandarte-SS Adolf Hitler.png14th Anti Tank Company LSSAH
15th Motor Cycle Company LSSAH
1st SS Reconnaissance Battalion LSSAH
SS Panzer Grenadier Regiment 25
12SSHJinsig.png12th SS Panzer Division Hitlerjugend

Kurt Adolf Wilhelm Meyer (ᛉ 23 December 1910 in Jerxheim, Duchy of Brunswick; ᛣ 23 December 1961 in Hagen, Westfalen) was a german officer of the SS and the Waffen-SS during World War II.

Life

Meyer was nicknamed "Panzermeyer"
From left to right: SS-Sturmbannführer Erich Olboeter, SS-Standartenführer Kurt Meyer and SS-Standartenführer Wilhelm Mohnke fighting against the invasion at the end of July 1944.
Funeral of Kurt Meyer

Meyer son of a a miner and later factory worker, who had joined the Imperial German Army in 1914 and was a decorated NCO (Feldwebel) in World War I. Meyer began a business apprenticeship after completing middle school, but became unemployed in 1928 and was forced to work as a handyman before becoming a policeman (Polizist) in Mecklenburg-Schwerin the following year. Meyer joined the Hitler Youth when he was fifteen, became a full member of the NSDAP in September 1930, and joined the SS in October 1931. He was a guest at the marriage of Joseph Goebbels in December of that year. In May 1934, Meyer was transferred to the Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler (LSSAH). He served during the Austria's accession to the German Reich in March 1938 and the liberation of the Sudetenland in October 1938.

WW II

Meyer saw action in many major battles, including the Poland campaign, the Battle of France, the Operation Barbarossa, and the Battle of Normandy, where he was captured.[1]

"Meyer was awarded the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves and Swords. The Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross and its higher grade Oak Leaves and Swords was awarded to recognise extreme battlefield bravery or successful military leadership. Upon promotion on 16 June 1944 at the age of 33 years, 5 months and 25 days Meyer became one of the youngest divisional commanders in the Waffen-SS during the Second World War. After the war he was put on trial for war crimes relating to the shooting of Allied prisoners in Normandy for which he was sentenced to death. The sentence was commuted to life imprisonment. He petitioned for clemency and was released in 1954."[2]

Wehrmachtbericht

"In this section, in the battles of the last days, has the 12th SS Panzer Division "Hitler Youth" under the command of SS-Standartenführer Meyer, especially the combat groups of SS-Sturmbannführer Olboetter, have especially distinguished themselves." — Wehrmachtbericht from 29 June 1944[3]

Death

Only 51 years of age Generalmajor a. D. Kurt Meyer, now sales Manager of a German brewery (Andreas-Brauerei in Hagen; the owner, Karl-Horst Andreas, was also an officer of the Waffen-SS), died during dinner with the family on 23 December 1961 (his birthday) due to a heart attack. The many wounds during the war and the hardships as a POW had taken it's toll on his health.

To his burial on 28 December 1961 in Hagen-Delstern up to 15,000 mourners from other German cities and from all of Europe arrived and were led by Generaloberst a. D. Sepp Dietrich. The Bundeswehr arranged an honor guard. Chancellor of Germany Konrad Adenauer and Federal Minister of Defence Franz Josef Strauß sent Telegrams.

Family

Kurt Meyer was married since December 1934 to Käthe, née Bohlmann (ᛉ 1911), with whom he had five children, who all received Germanic names[4]:

  • Irmtraud
  • Ursula
  • Kurt (Junior)
  • Inge
  • Gerhild

Promotions

Decorations

References

  1. Die Gefangennahme Kurt Meyers 1944
  2. Kurt Meyer, military-history.fandom.com (archive)
  3. Original: „In diesem Abschnitt haben sich in den Kämpfen der letzten Tage die 12. SS-Panzerdivision „Hitler-Jugend“ unter Führung von SS-Standartenführer Meyer, insbesondere die Kampfgruppen des SS-Sturmbannführers Olboeter, besonders ausgezeichnet.“
  4. Germanisch-deutsche Vornamen für Kinder edlen Blutes!