TracesOfWar needs your help! We miss photos of important sights in the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany. Submit your photos to input@tracesofwar.com and it will be published!

Kloskowski, Karl

Date of birth:
February 9th, 1917 (Lankow/Pommerania, Germany)
Date of death:
April 23rd, 1945 (Ocker in the Harz, Germany)
Nationality:
German (1933-1945, Third Reich)

Biography

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

Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Awarded on:
July 3rd, 1941
Bronze version.
Infanterie-Sturmabzeichen
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Awarded on:
July 19th, 1941
Eisernes Kreuz 2. Klasse
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Awarded on:
October 2nd, 1941
Eisernes Kreuz 1. Klasse
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Awarded on:
November 16th, 1941
Verwundetenabzeichen 1939 in Schwarz
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Awarded on:
August 20th, 1942
Medaille
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
SS-Hauptscharführer (Warrant Officer)
Unit:
Zugführer 4. / SS-Panzer-Regiment 2 / 2.SS-Panzer-Division "Das Reich" / Heeresgruppe Süd
Awarded on:
July 13th, 1943
Kloskowski’s Knight’s Cross recommendation reads as follows…

“Kloskowski was already recommended for the award of the Knight’s Cross in November 1941. He had set out towards Moshaisk with a recon troop, captured the village on his own initiative, and then gave the enemy the impression of stronger forces through skillful leadership in such a way that they gave it up completely. By this the Division was able to reach its attack objective almost without loss.

The recommendation was however turned down by the Division, as Kloskowski had just recently been decorated with the Iron Cross First Class.

In more recent operations Kloskowski has once again especially distinguished himself as a Zugführer, having shown extraordinary bravery and self-reliant initiative (especially when employed as a point Zugführer) in several operations of the Abteilung and the Kompanie. In this context he was credited with the confirmed destruction of 9 heavy/medium Pak, 12-15 anti-tank rifles, 8 heavy mortars and 1 artillery piece.

Kloskowski has now outstandingly distinguished himself in the operation against Pawlograd. Leading the point Zug 10 minutes ahead of the Abteilung along the only negotiable road embankment, he destroyed a total of 4 anti-tank guns, 1 armoured car and 8 trucks up until reaching the city’s edge. In the western part of Pawlograd Kloskowski drove to the large bridge over the Woltschja against a Pakfront and enemy infantry (the latter being particularly abundant at the bridge supports). Although Kloskowski had orders to halt in the face of strong resistance and, in this case, tie down the enemy until the arrival of the Abteilung, he carried on across the bridge on his own initiative, eliminating the 3 enemy anti-tank guns and the Russians at the bridge. In the process he stalked 3 defending T-34s, forcing them to retreat with concentrated fire and later destroying another one. At the head of the Abteilung he fought his way further through the village, and in the process destroyed the 3 aforementioned T-34s as well as 4 anti-tank guns, 1 Katyusha and 12 occupied Russian trucks.

Through this swift capture of the bridge and the swift thrust through the 8 km long village at the head of his Kompanie, he is significantly associated with the victory here. Only through this swift and independently made and conducted decision was it possible for the Division to capture the village and destroy/scatter the bulk of a Russian brigade (the staff of which was located in the village) with minimal friendly losses.

Kloskowski is also worthy of this high award due to his persistent, exemplary fulfillment of his duties. He is an energetic NCO, distinguished in all crises, and a man with a respectable character.”
1859th Award.
Submitted on March 26th 1943.
Preliminary document and decoration on July 16th 1943 to Heeresgruppe Süd.
Most sources keep July 11th 1943 as the date of receiving the Knights Cross. On the "vorschlagen" to the DKiG and Nennung im Ehrenblatt the date for receiving the Knights Cross is however stated as July 13th 1943.
Ritterkreuz des Eisernen Kreuzes
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
SS-Untersturmführer (2nd Lieutenant)
Unit:
7. / SS-Panzer-Regiment "Das Reich"
Awarded on:
November 15th, 1943
Ehrenblattspange des Heeres und Waffen-SS
2314th Award.
Most sources keep November 5th 1943 as the date of mentioning in the Ehrenblatt. On the "vorschlag" to the DKiG, the date is however stated as November 15th 1943.
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Awarded on:
December 12th, 1943
Verwundetenabzeichen 1939 in Silber
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
SS-Obersturmführer (Lieutenant)
Unit:
Kompanieführer 7. / SS-Panzer-Regiment 2 "Das Reich"
Awarded on:
May 23rd, 1944
Award 574/41
Deutsches Kreuz in Gold
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Awarded on:
July 13th, 1944
Panzerkampfabzeichen II Stufe
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
SS-Obersturmführer (Lieutenant)
Unit:
Chef 7. / SS-Panzer-Regiment 2 / 2.SS-Panzer-Division "Das Reich" / Heeresgruppe B
Awarded on:
August 11th, 1944
Kloskowski’s Oakleaves recommendation reads as follows…

“SS-Obersturmführer Kloskowski is an outstandingly brave and dutiful SS officer and Kompanie commander, who has distinguished himself in all campaigns of this war.

Due to very high casualties (particularly in officers and NCOs) caused by enemy drumfire, bombardments and numerous mortar strikes, the infantry of Kampfgruppe Wahl (in positions from St. Andre de Bohon-Crossroads at Lemonderie-Les Landes, see sketch) had become both depleted and weary. The enemy achieved penetrations daily.

SS-Obersturmführer Kloskowski and his Kompanie were deployed to support this weak Kampfgruppe. In very dense terrain, where visibility was mostly restricted to just 50 metres distance, SS-Obersturmführer Kloskowski and his Panzers stood in the foremost line, repelling enemy tank and infantry attacks. Almost all opportunities to maneuver were taken away by the hedges and sunken roads. On several occasions the friendly infantry were forced back and the Panzers assaulted in close combat. SS-Obersturmführer Kloskowski would launch counterthrusts on foot against enemy infantry with success on a couple of occasions. Being limited by the unsuitable terrain, the artillery superiority of the enemy and their strong infantry forces, Kloskowski and his Kompanie took significant losses in men and Panzers.

On the 10.07.1944 the enemy succeeded in achieving two deep penetrations from the north and east, against which SS-Obersturmführer Kloskowski commenced a counterthrust with only 4 friendly Panzers. In this one counterthrust he eliminated 12 enemy tanks.

When the order to pull back was given on the 12.07.1944 due to the strong enemy pressure, Kampfgruppe Wahl was locked in hard combat against an enemy who had penetrated deeply in some places. At 22:00 the enemy threatened to overtake the Kampfgruppe in its withdrawal movement to the bridge, and thereby cut its only escape route. In this almost hopeless situation, amidst heavy artillery drumfire and the onset of darkness, Kloskowski made the independent decision to attack and throw back the enemy so as to enable friendly forces to disengage and evacuate the bridgehead. With only a few infantry as support SS-Obersturmführer Kloskowski succeeded in this attack, overrunning an enemy battalion and eliminating the greater part of it.

It was only thanks to this independent decision, made in a desperate hour, that Kampfgruppe Wahl (composed of the remnants of Regiment 38) was able to avoid destruction.

In total SS-Obersturmführer captured or destroyed the following enemy materiel during the bitter defensive battles in the time period 09.-12.07.1944:

17 enemy tanks
8 anti-tank guns
21 bazookas
5 trucks
700 enemy dead
Innumerable light infantry weapons.”
546th Award.
Submitted on August 1st 1944.
Ritterkreuz mit Eichenlaub

Sources

  • Photo 1: Wilco Vermeer
  • Photo: Wilco Vermeer collection, the Netherlands
  • - MOONEY, PETER, Waffen-SS Knights and their Battles, Schiffer Publishing, Ltd, 2010.
    - Die Ordensträger der Deutschen Wehrmacht (CD), VMD-Verlag GmbH, Osnabrück, 2002
    - Kwasny A., Kwasny G., Die Eichenlaubträger 1940-1945 (CD), Deutsches Wehrkundearchiv, Lage-Waddenhausen, 2001
    - Federl, C., Die Ritterkreuzträger der Deutschen Panzerdivisionen 1939-1945, VDM Heinz Nickel, Zweibrücken, Germany, 2000
    - Patzwall K., Scherzer V., Das Deutsche Kreuz 1941-1945, Geschichte und Inhaber Band II, Verlag Klaus D. Patzwall, Norderstedt, 2001
    - SS-Personalakte
    - Microfilm Publication A3343. US National Archives.

Photo