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Tornau, Gottfried

Date of birth:
December 20th, 1919 (Hamburg, Germany)
Date of death:
February 9th, 1992 (Eutin/Schleswig-Holstein, Germany)
Nationality:
German (1933-1945, Third Reich)

Biography

Was credited with a total of 40 tanks destroyed by the end of the war.

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Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
Leutnant (2nd Lieutenant)
Unit:
Artillerie-Regiment 20
Awarded on:
July 9th, 1940
Eisernes Kreuz 2. Klasse
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
Leutnant (2nd Lieutenant)
Unit:
3./ Sturmgeschutz-Abt. 184
Awarded on:
September 3rd, 1941

Awarded for his 2 wounds inflicted on the 27th en the 31st of August 1941.
Verwundetenabzeichen 1939 in Schwarz
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
Leutnant (2nd Lieutenant)
Awarded on:
September 9th, 1941
Eisernes Kreuz 1. Klasse
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
Leutnant (2nd Lieutenant)
Unit:
3./ Sturmgeschutz-Abt. 184
Awarded on:
April 9th, 1942

Awarded for his 3rd wound inflicted on the 4th of April 1942.
Verwundetenabzeichen 1939 in Silber
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
Oberleutnant (1st Lieutenant)
Unit:
3./ Sturmgeschutz-Abt. 184
Awarded on:
October 28th, 1942

Awarded for his 5th wound inflicted on the 27th of September 1942.
Verwundetenabzeichen 1939 in Gold
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
Oberleutnant (1st Lieutenant)
Unit:
3. / Sturmgeschütz-Abteilung 184
Awarded on:
May 28th, 1943
Deutsches Kreuz in Gold
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
Hauptmann (Captain)
Unit:
Sturmgeschutz-Abt. 184
Awarded on:
December 1st, 1943
(Allgemeines) Sturmabzeichen
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
Hauptmann (Captain)
Unit:
Führer Sturmartillerie-Brigade der Führer-Grenadier-Division "Großdeutschland"
Awarded on:
March 5th, 1945
Tornau won his Knight's Cross for actions at Nantikow (Pomerania), where he led a counterattack against a large Soviet armoured attack. He and his men halted the hostile offensive and thereby allowed thousands of wounded soldiers (as well as civilians) to flee west.
Ritterkreuz des Eisernen Kreuzes

Sources

  • Photo 1: Willi Schumacher Collection
  • - SCHERZER, VEIT & FARWICK, WERNER, Die Ritterkreuzträger der Sturmartillerie 1939-1945, Verlag Veit Scherzer, 2012.
    - Die Ordensträger der Deutschen Wehrmacht (CD), VMD-Verlag GmbH, Osnabrück, 2002
    - Fellgiebel W.P., Elite of the Third Reich, The recipients of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross 1939-1945: A Reference, Helion & Company Limited, Solihull, 2003, ISBN 1-874622-46-9
    - Heukemes F., The General Assault Badge, A Definitive Guide to the German Award of World War II, Volume 1
    - Patzwall K., Scherzer V., Das Deutsche Kreuz 1941-1945, Geschichte und Inhaber Band II, Verlag Klaus D. Patzwall, Norderstedt, 2001, ISBN 3-931533-45-X