Krause, Bernhard

Date of birth:
May 11th, 1910 (Weimar, Germany)
Date of death:
February 19th, 1945 (Muzsla, Hungary)
Buried on:
German War Cemetery Vazec
Plot: 2. Row: 22. Grave: 635.
Nationality:
German (1933-1945, German Reich)

Biography

Do you have more information about this person? Inform us!

Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
SS-Sturmbannführer (Major)
Unit:
I. Bataillon, SS-Panzergrenadier-Regiment 26, 12. SS-Panzer-Division "Hitlerjugend", Waffen-SS
Awarded on:
August 7th, 1944
In Patzwall / Scherzer as SS-Hauptsturmführer, Kdr. in the SS-Flak-Abteilung 1.
Deutsches Kreuz in Gold
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
SS-Sturmbannführer (Major)
Unit:
Kommandeur, I. Bataillon, SS-Panzergrenadier-Regiment 26, 12. SS-Panzer-Division "Hitlerjugend", Waffen-SS
Awarded on:
November 18th, 1944
Krause’s Knight’s Cross recommendation reads as follows…

“SS-Obersturmbannführer Krause has so far participated in the campaigns in the west (1940), Balkans, Russia and on the Invasion Front. He was recommended for the German Cross in Gold due to his acts of bravery performed in Russia and on the Invasion front in July 1944, with this being awarded to him on the 07.08.1944.

On the grounds of his subsequent brave actions in the fighting around Falaise, SS-Obersturmbannführer Krause is now being recommended for the Knight’s Cross to the Iron Cross.

On the 13.08.1944 the enemy succeeding in breaking through the sectors of the 85. & 89. Infanterie-Divisionen along the road Caen-Falaise. Kampfgruppe Krause, composed of the remnants of several Bataillonen, was positioned along both sides of this main road at Soulangy in order to prevent a breakthrough to Falaise.

Over the course of the 14.08.1944, following several attacks that were extremely costly for the foe, the enemy managed to envelop the position of the Bataillon. The Division ordered the position to be pulled back towards Falaise while securing the intersection located a kilometre north of the city during the night of the 15./16.08.1944. During the 16.08.1944 the heavily weakened Kampfgruppe defended the ruins of Falaise with outstanding bravery against the overwhelming enemy who attacked from the north, west and southwest. After suffering high bloody losses (which included 7 tanks as well as numerous halftracks and armoured cars) the enemy succeeded in assuming control of the southern part of the city by nightfall. The remnants of the Bataillon continued to defended the ruined houses around the cathedral and barracks in the northern part of the city.

Individual resistance nests fought to the last man. Around midnight the Division ordered the remnants of the Bataillon (about 1 weak Kompanie) to withdraw towards La Hoguette so as to prevent a further enemy breakthrough towards the southeast.

The Bataillon’s heroic struggle here (in which SS-Obersturmbannführer Krause constantly incited his men to the highest resistance) prevented a breakthrough by overwhelming enemy forces towards Argentan and thereby a separation of the 5. Panzerarmee and 7. Armee.

During the fighting in and around Caen SS-Obersturmbannführer Krause was always an inspiring example for the Division on account of his outstanding personal bravery.

During the fighting in Falaise he mastered a desperate situation through tough steadfastness and self-sacrifice, standing firm with a handful of men while defending an urban block that had been encircled by the enemy. Only after being repeatedly ordered to do so did he break through the attacking forces and fight his way back towards La Hoguette.

I hold SS-Obersturmbannführer Krause as one who is worthy of the high award of the Knight’s Cross to the Iron Cross on the grounds of the bravery he has shown.”
Ritterkreuz des Eisernen Kreuzes

Sources