- Second World War (1939-1945)
- SS-Hauptsturmführer (Captain)
- Kompaniechef, 1. Kompanie, I. Abteilung, SS-Panzer-Regiment 2 Das Reich, 2. SS-Panzer-Division "Das Reich", Waffen-SS
- Awarded on:
- December 10th, 1943
Holzer’s Knight’s Cross recommendation reads as follows…
“SS-Hauptsturmführer Holzer has especially distinguished himself as a decisive and far-sighted Panzer-Kompanie commander, often also serving as the leader of a small, independent Panzergruppe.
On the 12.09.1943 Holzer received the order to proceed with the 7 Panthers of his Kompanie with all haste from Kolomak to Kraschanitschen. From there they were to stand as a ready-reserve behind the boundary between the SS-Aufklärungs-Abteilung ‘Das Reich’ and the Grenadier-Regiment 344.
At 16:30 Holzer reached Kraschanitschen and at the same time spotted a group of 28 T-34s near Point 188.3. They had broken through the German line and were continuing their advance towards Nikolajewka.
Holzer made the decision to engage the much superior enemy from the march. He directed some of his Panzers towards the east in order to frontally engage and tie down the enemy, meanwhile he would take the rest and attack the enemy’s right flank while personally leading at the front of his formation. The result was a very heavy firefight, partially fought at close range.
Through this decisive attack, and the commander’s demonstrated personal bravery shown while conducting it, all enemy tanks were destroyed in 40 minutes without any friendly losses. Holzer and his Panzer crew were personally responsible for 7 enemy tanks in this engagement.
As a result of this total defensive success (made possible by Holzer’s swift and independent action, prudent handling and superior leadership) not only was the broken-in enemy eliminated, but the otherwise unavoidable breakthrough was prevented and the restoration of the old battlefield situation enabled.”