Wisch, Theodor Peter Johann "Teddy"

Date of birth:
December 13th, 1907 (Wesselburenerkoog/Holstein, Germany)
Date of death:
January 11th, 1995 (Norderstedt/Schleswig-Holstein, Germany)
Nationality:
German (1933-1945, German Reich)

Biography

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Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Awarded on:
December 23rd, 1936
Deutsches Olympia Ehrenzeichen Zweiter Klasse
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
SS-Hauptsturmführer (Captain)
Awarded on:
April 2nd, 1938
Deutsches Reiterabzeichen in Silber
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
SS-Hauptsturmführer (Captain)
Awarded on:
March 2nd, 1939
Medaille zur Erinnerung an den 13. März 1938
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
SS-Hauptsturmführer (Captain)
Awarded on:
May 22nd, 1939
Medaille zur Erinnerung an den 1. Oktober 1938
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
SS-Hauptsturmführer (Captain)
Unit:
Kompanie Chef 1.Sturm / I.Sturmbann / Leibstandarte SS “Adolf Hitler”
Awarded on:
September 24th, 1939
Eisernes Kreuz 2. Klasse
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
SS-Hauptsturmführer (Captain)
Awarded on:
June 12th, 1940
Spange zur Medaille zur Erinnerung an den 1. Oktober 1938
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
SS-Hauptsturmführer (Captain)
Unit:
Kompanie Chef 1.Sturm / I.Sturmbann / Leibstandarte SS “Adolf Hitler”
Awarded on:
November 8th, 1939
Eisernes Kreuz 1. Klasse
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
SS-Sturmbannführer (Major)
Unit:
Kommandeur II. / SS-Panzer-Grenadier-Regiment "Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler” / Panzergruppe 1 / Heeresgruppe Süd
Awarded on:
September 15th, 1941
Action:
Awarded for his battalion's defense of Sokolow (near Zhitomir) in the period 11-14.07.1941. This village was successfully held against a total of 36 Soviet attacks from elements of three divisions. The Soviet attempts to break through towards the south were thus stymied, and Wisch's troops were relieved on the 17th.
Details:
506th Award.
Ritterkreuz des Eisernen Kreuzes
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Awarded on:
March 2nd, 1942
Infanterie-Sturmabzeichen
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Awarded on:
September 4th, 1942
Medaille
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
SS-Standartenführer (Colonel)
Unit:
Kommandeur SS-Panzer-Grenadier-Regiment 2 "Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler”
Awarded on:
February 25th, 1943
Details:
Award 3/611.
Deutsches Kreuz in Gold
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Awarded on:
December 31st, 1943
Action:
The "Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler" Panzer Division, led by SS-Oberführers Wisch, particularly distinguished themselves by showing exemplary fighting spirit in the defensive battles in the vicinity of Shitomir.
Wehrmachtbericht
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
SS-Brigadeführer / Generalmajor der Waffen-SS (Brigadier)
Unit:
Kommandeur 1.SS-Panzer-Division "Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler" / 1.SS-Panzerkorps / Heeresgruppe Süd
Awarded on:
February 12th, 1944
Ritterkreuz mit Eichenlaub
Action:
Wisch's Oakleaves recommendation reads as follows...
"I. In the battles of the Russian campaign of 1941 (especially in the mopping up of the Nogai steppe in September 1941), in the capture of Mariupol, and in the defensive battles in and west of Rostov, the high qualities of leadership and the personal bravery of SS-Brigadeführer Wisch have been repeatedly proven. With his battalion widely separated from the division and often operating independently without any contact, he has accomplished the tasks assigned by the division with excellence and evident instinct for the enemy's weaknesses (which can be attributed to his frequent personal reconnaissance of the front lines). He achieved great successes, as much from a tactical perspective as through the annihilation of large quantities of men and equipment.
II. During the winter campaign in February/March 1943 SS-Brigadeführer Wisch, as commander of the SS-Panzer-Grenadier-Regiment 2 "LSSAH," is to be credited to the utmost as a leader and champion of his men. Under personal action he was able, along with his men, to repel all attacks of the Russians against the thinly occupied security line east of Kharkov and to slow down massive enemy assaults during the planned disengagement movement of his regiment. He succeeded in picking up the 298th and 320th Infantry Divisions from the foreground of the main fighting line and, through violent counter-thrusts carried out by his III. (armored) Battalion, in weakening enemy forces to a considerable extent. The counterattack that began on 2.3.1943 was led by SS-Brigadeführer Wisch personally. With the spearhead companies he forced the bridgehead at Bridok in hard offensive battles by Hf. Ljachowa, and in an enveloping operation with his armored battalion created conditions for the taking of Walki. Again leading personally, in the following days SS-Brigadefuhrer Wisch achieved the capture of Ogulzy and Ljubotin, the jump off points for the attack on Kharkov. Engaged with his regiment during the battle for Kharkov in the open right flank, on the first day or the attack (10.3.1943) he penetrated as far as the railway station installations. After eliminating the intense flank menace from the heavily wooded south part of Kharkov he captured the city center and in the next two days the eastern edge of Kharkov.
The capture of Belgorod in a surprise attack during March 1943 was begun with the furious attack of Wisch's regiment. He again led from the front-most lines prepared by a pursuit in a wide area. After breaching the early fierce resistance he carried out the battle objectives often in personal command of the III. Battalion of his regiment.
III. During Operation "Zitadelle," SS-Brigadeführer Wisch as commander of the 1. SS-Panzer-Grenadier-Division "LSSAH" again showed himself a soldierly leader with high military skill, strong energy and toughness. With a permanent personal commitment he has led the division through these hard offensive and defensive battles from the front line. The successes achieved when we were on the attack are thanks to his personal intervention. The armored personnel carrier of the divisional commander during the middle of the tank attacks, or among the attacking grenadiers, or rushing across the battlefield from command post to command post were images constantly repeated during these days. His fair evaluation of the situation, his assessment of the progress of our offensive battles, and his permanent presence on the front lines are to be thanked for the successful defense on 12.7.1943 during the operative defense carried out by SS-Panzer-Regiment 1 and the assault gun battalion against the surprise enemy attack with two tank corps. In two hours the division knocked out or destroyed 130 enemy tanks using our tanks, assault guns, and close combat troops.
IV. After the conclusion of the disarmament of Italian troops all over the plains in upper Italy, SS-Brigadefuhrer Wisch and his division were since 1.11.1943 engaged incessantly in large battles around Zhitomir, Korosten, Berditschev, and southwest of Pogrbischtsche. In each one of these five large offensive operations as well as in the defensive battles eastwards of Zhitomir and Berditschev, SS-Brigadeführer Wisch (with his permanent personal commitment to the front lines) was the soul of the fight.
During the assault from 14.-18.11.1943 in the deep flank of the enemy from Kornin over Ssolowjewka towards Kotscherowo along the road Zhitomir-Kiev, and after the breakthrough of the armoured group, strong enemy forces interdicted the advance route. They settled down around Ssolowjewka with the bulk of their force in Brusilov, and then tried to hinder the advance of the division through counterattacks. Through an offensive flank cover by elements of the 2. Regiment and the Aufklärungs Abteilung, the division managed to secure the ground gained toward the east. During an enemy breakthrough from the west on 26.11.1943, SS-Brigadeführer Wisch, just returned from a reconnaissance, dispatched several assault guns and elements from the III./SS-Panzer-Grenadier-Regiment 2 in a counterattack which he personally led. This annihilated a battalion strength enemy group and prevented the foreseen taking of the road. Immediately adjacent to this fighting the division was assigned the task to destroy several strong enemy infantry groups in the wooded area east of Radomyschl.
Without waiting for the assembly of the division (which had been slowed by bad road conditions) SS-Brigadeführer Wisch put into combat all of the combat ready assault guns with mounted infantry. With them, together with another Kampfgruppe deployed further to the northeast, he quickly gained ground. The union of both Kampfgruppen in the rear of the opponent was achieved after a few days, and with the remaining elements of the division that had since arrived at the battlefield acting as the hammer a pocket was created and the enemy destroyed.
Since 5.12.1943 the division had battled in the area eastward from Tschemjachoff with the task of establishing contact between the XIII. Armeekorps and the LIX. Armeekorps. The troops fought eastward from Korosten, pushing back and annihilating the enemy groups that had advanced from the area of Radomyschl.
SS-Brigadeführer Wisch began this undertaking with a wide assault by a strong armored group 30 km [18.6 miles] deep to the rear of the opponent laying in front of the XIII. Armeekorps. Without regard for the destructive fight of the XIII. Armeekorps then developing in the rear and flanks of the division, Wisch launched a daring assault with the armoured group and smashed the operational bridgehead of the enemy at Radomyschl.
The success of this undertaking, for which the chief of the 4. Panzerarmee General der Panzertruppen Erhard Raus personally expressed his special recognition, must be credited largely to SS-Brigadeführer Wisch (in addition to the boldness, bravery and almost superhuman abilities of the tankers and grenadiers of the division). With his armoured personnel carrier he travelled daily to the front and led the troops.
On 20.12.1943 the division, together with the 1. and 7. Panzer-Divisionen, received the task to move forward from the area east of Korosten towards the east to repel and destroy the opponent. Because of the tangled, swampy and bushy terrain the spearheads of these divisions went off their original attack routes after throwing the first enemy troops out of their field positions. Before an even larger confusion took place SS-Brigadeführer Wisch, with compass in hand, personally assumed command of his forward grenadiers and tanks.
As in the partisan area, the leadership of the Kampfgruppen from the divisional command post was almost impossible because of permanently interrupted telephone communications. During these day and night attacks SS-Brigadeführer Wisch always remained close to the forward elements. In this period of defensive battles against the bulk of the 3rd Guards Tank Army SS-Brigadeführer Wisch has proven both his bravery and command abilities.
In spite of the unfavourable tank situation due to the long march from the Korosten area to the east of Zhitomir, SS-Brigadeführer Wisch managed to hold up the massive assault of enemy tanks through quick concentrations of his own armour at the critical points. Through the building of anti-tank fronts with tanks under repair he destroyed the enemy tank forces.
Mention of the division in the Wehrmacht report of 21.12.1943 and in a personal teletype sent by Generalfeldmarschall von Manstein on 15.1.1944 is proof of acknowledgement of the division during these hard battle in the area east and southwest of Berdichev.
V. Under the command of SS-Brigadeführer Wisch, in the course of the fighting in Russia from 5-12.7.1943 and from 6.11.1943 to 31.1.1944, the 1. SS-Panzer-Division "LSSAH" has captured or destroyed...
1,124 T-34s, 12 KV tanks, 5 armoured scout cars, 89 other (small tanks), 6 guns of 7.62 cm, 34 guns of 12.2 cm, 5 anti-aircraft guns, 7 automatic guns, 97 other guns, 227 medium anti-tank guns (3.7 to 4.5 cm), 1,056 heavy anti-tank guns (7.62 cm), 12 mortars of 50 mm, 45 mortars of 82 mm, 73 mortars of 122 mm, 553 anti-tank rifles, 638 machine-guns, 575 machine-pistols, 2,003 rifles, 9 set up flame throwing barriers, 37 aircraft, 334 vehicles, 98 animal-drawn vehicles, 2,953 prisoners, 16,541 enemy killed
Because of his permanently proven bravery, his never-ending high proof of worth and the excellent leadership of his division, I consider SS-Brigadeführer Wisch worthy of the high award of the Oakleaves to the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross.
Details:
393rd Award.
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
SS-Brigadeführer / Generalmajor der Waffen-SS (Brigadier)
Unit:
Kommandeur 1.SS-Panzer-Division "Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler"
Awarded on:
August 30th, 1944
Ritterkreuz mit Eichenlaub und Schwertern
Details:
94th Award.
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Details:
Received with swords.
Ordinul Corona Romaneii Officer

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