- Second World War (1939-1945)
- SS-Obersturmbannführer (Lieutenant-colonel)
- Ia 5. SS-Panzer-Division “Wiking” / 8.armee / Heeresgruppe Süd
- Awarded on:
- February 23rd, 1944
Schönfelder's Knight's Cross recommendation reads as follows...
"SS-Obersturmbannführer Schonfelder has since December 1942 been the la (first staff officer) of the SS-Pz. Div. Wiking, and in this time he has delivered excellent general staff work. Through his decisiveness and firmness, he has contributed in various ways during all of the crises of the division. At any time he has delivered against the highest demands placed upon him.
His decisiveness was particularly evident in the fighting at Gorodishtche from 08. to 09.02.1944. After thorough rainfall, the roads had become groundless and almost impassable. The planned withdrawals could, therefore, only be carried out in sections preceded by timely measures, so they could figure out positions in the mud for the heavy vveapons. The orders for the movement from position "Green" to position "Red" came late, so they only had four hours to do this. Since it was in this crucial moment that there was a breach in the southern positions at Petropavlovka, Schonfelder had to decide whether to go back to the "Red" line or remain for another twenty-four hours with the heavy weapons and secure the gap in the front line created by the displacement of his neighbours to the right. He made the decision to remain after a breach occurred at Hof Skiti, and to hold between there and the main battle line (Black). Through this, the opportunity to move the heavy weapons from their positions at Mleyevo to Gorodischtsche was made possible, since there was no other street or road present to move to the new "Red" position. He held open the gap in the front via security and alarm units.
Thus, and only by the personal intervention of SS-Obersturmbannführer Schonfelder, was it possible for all of the heavy weapons to be taken through to Gorodischtsche. This was significant to successfully securing the new position.
I therefore consider SS-Obersturmbannführer Schonfelder, due to his demonstrated resolve, worthy of being awarded the Knight's Cross."