Alois Kalss

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Alois Kalss
Born 18 February 1920
St. Gilgen, Austria
Died 2 May 1945 (1945-05-03) (aged 25)
Berlin, Germany
Allegiance  Nazi Germany
Service/branch Flag Schutzstaffel.svg Waffen-SS
Years of service 1939–1945
Rank Hauptsturmführer
Unit SS Division Das Reich
102 SS Heavy Panzer Battalion
Battles/wars World War II
Awards Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross
Iron Cross I Class
Iron Cross II Class
German Cross in Gold
Wound Badge in Gold
Panzer Badge "75" in Silver
Infantry Assault Badge in Silver
Tank Destruction Badge 2x
Eastern Front Medal

Alois Kalss[Notes 1] (18 February 1920 – May 2, 1945) was a Hauptsturmführer in the Waffen-SS during World War II. He was awarded the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross, which was awarded to recognize extreme battlefield bravery or successful military leadership by Nazi Germany during World War II.

Early life[edit]

Alois Kalss was born on 18 February 1920, in St Gilgen a village near Salzburg in Austria.

World War II[edit]

Kalss volunteered to join the Waffen SS during World War II and was posted to the SS Division Das Reich. He was awarded the Iron Cross I & II class during the invasion of the Soviet Union (Operation Barbarossa) in July and September 1941. In the Third Battle of Kharkov he was in the 8th Company, SS Panzer Regiment 2 and throughout September 1943 Das Reich Tiger tanks scored heavily against Russian armor. On 23 September Kalss received the German Cross in Gold for his adept leadership of his platoon during the late summer. On 18 September he took command of the Tiger company and was wounded soon afterwards. The Das Reich Tiger company was disbanded and its surviving personnel distributed among the three companies of the forming 102 SS Heavy Panzer Battalion (most Das Reich veterans went to its first company).[2]

Kalss, in command of the 1st Company, together with 102 SS was sent to Normandy to counter the D Day landings. The battalion was involved in the fighting for point 112 and was almost completely destroyed during the fighting. Kalss was awarded the Knight's Cross in August 1944 for his bravery during the fighting in Normandy and had 42 tank kills by July 1944.[citation needed]

In September 1944, The battalion was pulled back Sennelager in Germany to reform, renamed as 502 SS Heavy Panzer Battalion.

Kalss was killed in action on the 2 May 1945, in the vicinity of the Kummersdorfer Forest south of Berlin, when his Tiger received a direct hit from an anti tank gun.

Awards[edit]

  • Knight's Cross (23.08.'44)
  • German Cross in Gold (23.09.'43)
  • Iron Cross I (17.09.'41)
  • Iron Cross II (10.07.'41)
  • Panzer Badge in Silver "75" ('44)
  • Panzer Badge in Silver
  • Infantry Assault Badge in Silver (12.05. '42)
  • Tank Destruction Badge in Silver
  • Tank Destruction Badge in Silver ('44)
  • Eastern Front Medal
  • Wound Badge in Gold (23.08.'43)
  • Wound Badge in Silver (31.05.'43)
  • Wound Badge in Black (13.03.'42)
  • Honour Chevron for Old Fighters
  • SS-Death's Head Ring

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ According to Fellgiebel last name is spelled Kalls.[1]

References[edit]

Citations
  1. ^ Fellgiebel 2000, p. 250.
  2. ^ Fey, p.346
Bibliography
  • Fellgiebel, Walther-Peer (2000). Die Träger des Ritterkreuzes des Eisernen Kreuzes 1939–1945 – Die Inhaber der höchsten Auszeichnung des Zweiten Weltkrieges aller Wehrmachtsteile [The Bearers of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross 1939–1945 — The Owners of the Highest Award of the Second World War of all Wehrmacht Branches] (in German). Friedberg, Germany: Podzun-Pallas. ISBN 978-3-7909-0284-6. 
  • Henschler, Henri & Fey, Will (2003). Armor Battles of the Waffen-SS, 1943-45. Stackpole Books. ISBN 0-8117-2905-2.
  • Mitcham, Samuel (2007), 'The German Defeat in the East, 1944-45. Stackpole Books. ISBN 0-8117-3371-8.
  • Mitcham, Jr.Samuel (2007). Retreat to the Reich. Stackpole books. ISBN 0-8117-3384-X.
  • Krätschmer, E.G. (1999). Die Ritterkreuzträger der Waffen-SS. Nation Europa Verlag. ISBN 3-920677-43-9.
  • Yerger, Mark C. (2003). German Cross in Gold,Holders of the SS and Police(volume.1). R. James Bender Publishing. ISBN 0-912138-94-7.