Ludwig Heilmann

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Ludwig Heilmann
Bundesarchiv Bild 146-1973-005-06, Ludwig-Sebastian Heilmann.jpg
Born (1903-08-09)9 August 1903
Würzburg
Died 26 October 1959(1959-10-26) (aged 56)
Kempten
Allegiance  Weimar Republic (to 1933)
 Nazi Germany
Service/branch
Years of service 1921–33, 1934–45
Rank Generalmajor
Unit
Commands held 5. Fallschirmjäger-Division
Battles/wars World War II
Awards Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves and Swords

Ludwig Heilmann (9 August 1903 – 26 October 1959), was a German Fallschirmjäger and general during World War II. He was also a recipient of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves and Swords. The Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross and the award of devices Oak Leaves and Swords were presented to army, navy and air force personnel that demonstrated extreme courage or highly successful military leadership.

Early life and career

Heilmann entered the Reichswehr on 3 February 1921, serving with Infanterie-Regiment 21 (21st Infantry Regiment) of the 7. (Bayerische) Division. On 3 February 1933, having served for twelve years, he left the military service holding the rank of Feldwebel. After taking a number of courses he was reactivated on 1 July 1934 as an Oberleutnant and commander of the 5th Company, 20th Infantry Regiment.

World War II

During the Battle of France he won the Iron Cross first class with III Battalion of the Infanterie-Regiment 91 (91st Infantry Regiment) of the 27. Infanterie-Division.

Heilmann joined the parachute troops on 18 June 1940. After various courses and postings Major Heilmann became commander of III Battalion, 1st Parachute Regiment. His battalion was dropped into Crete on 20 May 1941 as part of the first wave. Heilmann's battalion played a part in the German success on the island.

In late autumn 1941 Heilmann and his battalion were sent to Russia, where they fought as infantry. Among the unit's actions was the defense of the Vyborgskaya bridgehead. Heilmann was promoted to Oberstleutnant on 20 April 1942. On 20 August 1943 he became commander of IV Battalion, 3rd Parachute Regiment and on 15 November regimental commander.

After the Allied landing in Sicily Heilmann and his regiment parachuted into the Catania Plain to reinforce "Battle Group Schmalz" of the Fallschirm-Panzer Division 1 "Hermann Göring". His battalion fought near Francoforte, tried to defend Centuripe near Regalbuto, Bronte and Maletto. On 1 December 1943 Heilmann was promoted to Oberst.

On the Italian mainland Heilmann's regiment fought near Ortona, where on 15 December it ran into an assembly of enemy forces. His I and II Battalions, led by Major Rudolf Böhmler and Hauptmann Gotthart Liebscher, and took Villa Grande. Ortona was held until 28 December.

Heilmann's regiment also took part in the defensive Battle of Monte Cassino. The third battle of Cassino saw it in the focal point of the battle for the monastery mountain.

On 23 September 1944 Ludwig Heilmann became the commanding officer of the 5. Fallschirmjäger-Division, which subsequently fought in the Ardennes. It was here in the south of battlezone where the 5th was ordered to defend the flank from attacks by the U.S. 3rd Army. Heilmann was captured by the Americans just prior to the end of the war and was released in 1947.

Awards

Wehrmachtbericht reference

Date Original German Wehrmachtbericht wording Direct English translation
16 March 1944 An der Südfront griff der Feind nach ungewöhnlich schweren Bombenangriffen, von starker Artillerie und Panzern unterstützt, den Ort Cassino an. Die Angriffe scheiterten am heldenhaften Widerstand des hier eingesetzten Fallschirmjägerregiments 3 unter Führung des Oberst Heilmann und unter wirksamer Unterstützung durch das Werferregiment 71 und Führung des Oberleutnants Andreae.[10] On the Southern Front, following an unusually heavy bombardment, supported by strong artillery and tanks, the enemy attacked the town Cassino. The attacks failed due to the heroic resistance of the here employed Parachute Regiment 3 under the leadership of Colonel Heilmann and effectively supported by the Mortar Regiment 71 under the leadership of First Lieutenant Andreae.

Notes

  1. 1.0 1.1 According to Scherzer as commander of the III./Fallschirmjäger-Regiment 3.[3]

References

Citations

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Thomas & Wegmann 1986, p. 105.
  2. Patzwall & Scherzer 2001, p. 172.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Scherzer 2007, p. 375.
  4. Fellgiebel 2000, p. 218.
  5. Von Seemen 1976, p. 159.
  6. Fellgiebel 2000, p. 79.
  7. Von Seemen 1976, p. 42.
  8. Fellgiebel 2000, p. 43.
  9. Von Seemen 1976, p. 16.
  10. Die Wehrmachtberichte 1939–1945 Band 3, p. 58.

Bibliography

  • Berger, Florian (1999). Mit Eichenlaub und Schwertern. Die höchstdekorierten Soldaten des Zweiten Weltkrieges (in German). Vienna, Austria: Selbstverlag Florian Berger. ISBN 978-3-9501307-0-6. Unknown parameter |trans_title= ignored (help) <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Fellgiebel, Walther-Peer (2000) [1986]. Die Träger des Ritterkreuzes des Eisernen Kreuzes 1939–1945 — Die Inhaber der höchsten Auszeichnung des Zweiten Weltkrieges aller Wehrmachtteile (in German). Friedberg, Germany: Podzun-Pallas. ISBN 978-3-7909-0284-6. Unknown parameter |trans_title= ignored (help) <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Kurowski, Franz (1995). Knights of the Wehrmacht Knight's Cross Holders of the Fallschirmjäger. Atglen, PA: Schiffer Military. ISBN 978-0-88740-749-9.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Patzwall, Klaus D.; Scherzer, Veit (2001). Das Deutsche Kreuz 1941 – 1945 Geschichte und Inhaber Band II (in German). Norderstedt, Germany: Verlag Klaus D. Patzwall. ISBN 978-3-931533-45-8. Unknown parameter |trans_title= ignored (help) <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Schaulen, Fritjof (2003). Eichenlaubträger 1940 – 1945 Zeitgeschichte in Farbe I Abraham – Huppertz (in German). Selent, Germany: Pour le Mérite. ISBN 978-3-932381-20-1. Unknown parameter |trans_title= ignored (help) <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Scherzer, Veit (2007). Die Ritterkreuzträger 1939–1945 Die Inhaber des Ritterkreuzes des Eisernen Kreuzes 1939 von Heer, Luftwaffe, Kriegsmarine, Waffen-SS, Volkssturm sowie mit Deutschland verbündeter Streitkräfte nach den Unterlagen des Bundesarchives (in German). Jena, Germany: Scherzers Miltaer-Verlag. ISBN 978-3-938845-17-2. Unknown parameter |trans_title= ignored (help) <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Lua error in Module:Citation/CS1/Identifiers at line 47: attempt to index field 'wikibase' (a nil value).
  • Thomas, Franz; Wegmann, Günter (1986). Die Ritterkreuzträger der Deutschen Wehrmacht 1939–1945 Teil II: Fallschirmjäger (in German). Osnabrück, Germany: Biblio-Verlag. ISBN 978-3-7648-1461-8. Unknown parameter |trans_title= ignored (help) <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Thomas, Franz (1997). Die Eichenlaubträger 1939–1945 Band 1: A–K (in German). Osnabrück, Germany: Biblio-Verlag. ISBN 978-3-7648-2299-6. Unknown parameter |trans_title= ignored (help) <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Von Seemen, Gerhard (1976). Die Ritterkreuzträger 1939–1945 : die Ritterkreuzträger sämtlicher Wehrmachtteile, Brillanten-, Schwerter- und Eichenlaubträger in der Reihenfolge der Verleihung : Anhang mit Verleihungsbestimmungen und weiteren Angaben (in German). Friedberg, Germany: Podzun-Verlag. ISBN 978-3-7909-0051-4. Unknown parameter |trans_title= ignored (help) <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Die Wehrmachtberichte 1939–1945 Band 3, 1. Januar 1944 bis 9. Mai 1945 (in German). München, Germany: Deutscher Taschenbuch Verlag GmbH & Co. KG. 1985. ISBN 978-3-423-05944-2. Unknown parameter |trans_title= ignored (help) <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

External links

Military offices
Preceded by
Generalleutnant Gustav Wilke
Commander of 5th Fallschirmjäger-Division
15 October 1944 – 21 March 1945
Succeeded by
Kurt Gröschke