- Second World War (1939-1945)
- SS-Hauptsturmführer (Captain)
- Kommandeur V. / SS-Artillerie Ausbildungs- und Ersatz Regiment & Führer Kampfgruppe
- Awarded on:
- December 26th, 1944
Schwappacher’s Knight’s Cross recommendation reads as follows…
“The Abteilung Schwappacher, consisting of a staff, staff Batterie and 21. Batterie (17. and 18. Batterien were attached to the LXXXVIII. Armee-Korps) has been employed between Nijmegen and Arnhem from the 18.09.1944 up until the present day. Its operations were significantly hindered during the first days by the fact that it was subordinated to Kampfgruppe Reinhold (II. SS-Panzer-Korps), which had none of the relevant logistical support. Consequently the Abteilung stood in its new area without any artillery ammunition. As a result Schwappacher took measures to resupply the Abteilung in the shortest possible time with ammunition from its old positions at Aerdenhout (over 100 km away), improvising with all that was available in the face of the greatest difficulties (the Abteilung is not motorized), in order for it to be able to fight at all.
During its employment around Nijmegen Schwappacher’s Abteilung contributed heavily to the fact that the Nijmegen bridgehead could be held for as long as it was (see combat report). Schwappacher furthermore…
1.) Held Oosterhout (3 km NNW of Nijmegen) on his own initiative with his Batterien in the time period 20.09.1944 (15:00) — 21.09.1944 (04:00), as the main German frontline lay about 2 km to his rear at the time.
2.) Through this Schwappacher was temporarily halted the inevitable enemy breakthrough towards Elst and Arnhem.
3.) This action also bought enough time for a Kampfgruppe of the II. SS-Panzer-Korps to form a new defensive line near Elst and thereby hold the bridgehead south of Arnhem. This was of massive importance for the counterattacks launched between the Rhine and the Waal during the fighting in this time.
4.) In addition Schwappacher, along with the drivers/gunners of his Ausb. und Ers. Abteilung, have demonstrated outstanding personal bravery, prudence and the legendary fighting spirit of the Waffen-SS while serving in the infantry role during several days and nights of close combat.
In order to complete this recommendation, I am attaching a copy of the relevant combat report along with it.
It is my view that Schwappacher, who has achieved such singular achievements with elements of an Art.-Ausb.u.Ers.-Abt., should be awarded the Knight’s Cross to the Iron Cross.”