Naue, Herbert

Date of birth:
December 14th, 1906 (Berlin-Grünau, Germany)
Date of death:
June 17th, 1942 (Sevastopol, USSR)
Nationality:
German (1933-1945, German Reich)

Biography

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Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
Leutnant der Reserve (2nd Lieutenant of Reserves)
Unit:
Führer 2./Infanterie-Regiment 178
Awarded on:
July 13th, 1940
Action:
Awarded for his actions during the fighting near Verdun on 15.06.1940. Here he commanded an assault Kompanie consisting of 6 infantry squads, 1 Pionier squad, an HMG, a mortar and 2 AT guns.

With this Kompanie he began the attack towards Fort Vacherauville at 07:00. In the initial phases they were able to get past the railway embankment and the Marre-Charny road without major losses. As the attack progressed to the steadily rising fields however, the Kompanie was badly exposed to the fire of the fort. And due to the hasty nature of the attack no artillery support was possible. However by skillfully employing his heavy weapons, which were stationed on the railway embankment, Naue managed to eliminate the French field positions and thereby get his Kompanie closer to the fort itself.

Meanwhile the 2. Batterie of the Artillerie-Regiment (positioned at the village of Norre) intervened and was able to score a few direct hits on the French armoured cupolas, forcing their crews to bring them back down under cover. Through this the preconditions were created for Naue’s Kompanie to finally reach the fort and begin tackling the embrasures individually with explosives. As the Pioniers began to blow up one structure after another, the commander of the fort finally surrendered to Naue.

Thus Leutnant Naue was able to report the capture of Fort Vacherauville at 11:15. In total 3 enemy officers and 178 men were also taken prisoner. For his actions here Naue would be the first soldier of the 76. Infanterie-Division to be decorated with the Knight’s Cross.
Ritterkreuz des Eisernen Kreuzes

Sources