Scharf, Heinz

Date of birth:
April 22nd, 1920 (Lichtenstein/Saxony, Germany)
Date of death:
July 13th, 2001 (Glauchau/Saxony, Germany)
Nationality:
German (1933-1945, German Reich)

Biography

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Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
Wachtmeister
Unit:
3. / Sturmgeschütz-Brigade 202
Awarded on:
May 28th, 1944
Deutsches Kreuz in Gold
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
Wachtmeister
Unit:
Geschützführer 3. / Sturmgeschütz-Brigade 202
Awarded on:
August 17th, 1944
Action:
The Sturmgeschütz-Brigade 202 found itself committed to the support of the 215. and 290. Infanterie-Divisionen in their positions north of Birsen on 07.08.1944. The next day, almost the entire brigade was dispatched to deal with an enemy break-in with the exception of two guns commanded by Wachtmeister Scharf and Oberwachtmeister Schulz, who remained in the area of the regiment the Brigade was originally attached to.

However out of nowhere enemy tanks appeared, heading straight for the regimental command post. The two Sturmgeschütze and their crews immediately went into action. In an intense tank battle, they managed to crush the attacking enemy force. Scharf knocked out 5 tanks with his vehicle, while Schulz destroyed 4. They were then ordered by the regimental commander to go forward to relieve the German troops in the advanced positions. After knocking out 2 more tanks en-route, Scharf’s gunner (Wulf), was wounded. Despite his severe pain the gunner knocked out yet another enemy tank. Scharf’s StuG had thus destroyed 8 enemy tanks in just 5 minutes.

After pulling back to rearm and refuel, the Scharf and his crew (minus Wulf) went back into action with Scharf performing the duties of the loader. They succeeded in defeating the Soviets who had broken in and enabled the German infantry to reoccupy the old main battle line.

With the destruction of 8 enemy tanks on this day Scharf had brought his total fo 40. Because of this, as well as succeeding in stabilizing a tough situation despite being vastly outnumbered, he would be awarded the Knight’s Cross.
Ritterkreuz des Eisernen Kreuzes

Sources