- Second World War (1939-1945)
- Oberst (Colonel)
- Führer, eines gepanzerten Verbandes, 8. Panzer-Division, Heer
- Awarded on:
- April 21st, 1944
Awarded the Knight’s Cross for his leadership of an ad-hoc armoured unit named Panzerverband Friebe during the time period 21.03.-18.04.1944. It was comprised of all armoured units in its area. Initially assembled around Zloczow, it initially consisted of the I./Pz.Rgt. 10, Pz.Aufkl.Abt. 8, I./Pz.Gr.Rgt. 8, Pz.Nach.Abt. 84, a Kompanie from the Pz.Pi.Bat. 59, Pz.Rgt. 2, I./Pz.Rgt. 11, a mixed Pz.Abt. from the SS-Div. “Wiking”, s.Pz.Abt. 507, A.A. 101 (equipped with Hummels), I./Pz.Gren.Rgt. 73 and the schwere Heeres-Brückenkolonne 849.
In the following weeks the Kampfgruppe would achieve notable successes in the sector of the XXXXVIII. Panzer-Korps. It helped free the trapped 361. Infanterie-Division near Brody, supported the hard-pressed Korps-Abteilung C, destroyed numerous Soviet units and assisted in the relief of the Tarnopol garrison.
Ultimately, over the course of a single month, Panzerverband Friebe would be credited with destroying/capturing…
168 tanks and assault guns
187 artillery pieces
142 anti-tank guns
56 anti-tank rifles
4 AA guns
2000+ enemy dead
The commanding 4. Panzer-Armee said the following of its commander in the aftermath of the battle…
“The successes of the formation are first and foremost thanks to Oberst i.G. Werner Friebe. He fulfilled the requirements of an armoured Kampfgruppe commander like no other, and his boldness inspired the entire unit to achieve the extraordinary.”