Schaffner, Willi

Date of birth:
November 24th, 1920 (Dentlein/Ansbach, Germany)
Date of death:
September 4th, 1944 (Near Pultusk, Poland)
German (1933-1945, German Reich)


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Second World War (1939-1945)
9. / Grenadier-Regiment 61 / 7.Infanterie-Division
Awarded on:
October 26th, 1943
As the Germans pulled back to the Dnieper river in mid-1943, the Soviet forces following behind pursued with all their might. This fact was evident during the withdrawal movements of the Grenadier-Regiment 61. On 22.09.1943, in the area west of Chernigov, Soviet troops began to overtake the 9./Gren.Rgt. 61. A member of that unit, Obergefreiter Schaffner, recognized this fact and foresaw a possible encirclement of his Kompanie. Responding swiftly he mustered a few Grenadiers and attacked these enemy forces in the flank, and despite facing heavy fire was able to inflict considerable losses on them. As a result this enemy group was compelled to suspend their offensive movements, thus relieving Schaffner’s Kompanie of a potentially disastrous situation. In recognition of his independent actions on this day Schaffer would receive the Knight’s Cross.
Ritterkreuz des Eisernen Kreuzes