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20 August 1897|
|Died||8 May 1945
|Allegiance|| German Empire (to 1918)
Weimar Republic (to 1933)
|Years of service||1914–1945|
|Commands held||Schützen-Regiment 115
|Battles/wars||World War I
World War II
|Awards||Knight's Cross with Oak Leaves and Swords|
Generalleutnant Ernst-Günther Baade (20 August 1897 – 8 May 1945) was a German general serving 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 its higher grade Oak Leaves and Swords was awarded to recognise extreme battlefield bravery or successful military leadership. He was wounded in action and died from his injuries on the last day of World War II in Europe.
World War I
Ernst-Günther Baade volunteered for military service in 1914 at the age of seventeen and joined the 9th Ulanenregiment (light cavalry). Baade distinguished himself in the fighting on the Eastern Front and was chosen for officer candidate training. He was commissioned as Leutnant in August 1916. In 1918 he transferred to the Western front where he was wounded during a poison gas attack.
World War II
On 6 March 1942 Baade was assigned to officers active reserve (Führerreserve). He subsequently transferred to the 15th Panzer Division in North Africa and took command of 115th Rifle Regiment on 15 April 1942, at that time committed to action in Libya and Cyrenaica.
Colonel Baade distinguished himself on 27 May 1942 by his leadership and decision making, checking an armored attack into the rear of the 15th Panzer Division. A battalion of the regiment under his command managed to infiltrate into Bir Hacheim on the next day, defeating the British opponents after 24 hours of bitter fighting. Col. Baade was awarded the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross for these actions. He was again wounded on 28 July 1942 at El-Alamein when his position was hit by artillery fire, then evacuated to Rome and Germany for a period of convalescence.
Promoted to Generalmajor, Baade assumed command of 90th Infantry Division at Monte Cassino. He was known for his occasionally eccentric behavior, his very small staff, his frequent front line inspection visits – all which made him popular with his troops. He was one of the few general officers who earned the wearing of a Tank Destruction Badge on his upper right sleeve for the single-handed destruction of an enemy tank with an infantry weapon. After the retreats into northern Italy, Baade shot and killed a lower ranking SS officer who tried to give him an order, then went briefly into hiding.
Baade was wounded in the neck and lower leg by a phosphorus projectile on 24 April 1945 when his Kübelwagen was strafed by a British fighter aircraft near Neverstaven in Holstein. Baade was taken to a hospital at Bad Segeberg, where he succumbed to gangrene on 8 May 1945, the last day of the war in Europe.
- Wound Badge
- Wehrmacht Long Service Award 2nd Class (2 October 1936)
- Infantry Assault Badge
- Tank Destruction Badge for Individual Combatants
- Cuffband "Afrika"
- German Cross in Gold on 2 November 1941 as Oberstleutnant in the I./Reiter-Regiment 22
- Iron Cross (1914)
- Clasp to the Iron Cross (1939)
- Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves and Swords
- Knight's Cross on 27 June 1942 as Oberst and commander of Schützen-Regiment 115
- 402nd Oak Leaves on 22 February 1944 as Oberst and leader of the 90. Panzergrenadier-Division
- 111th Swords on 16 November 1944 as Generalleutnant and commander of the 90. Panzergrenadier-Division "Adiatisches Küstenland"
- Mentioned twice in the Wehrmachtbericht (8 February 1944, 27 May 1944)
|Date||Original German Wehrmachtbericht wording||Direct English translation|
|8 February 1944||In den harten mehrtägigen Abwehrkämpfen nordwestlich Cassino hat sich die 44. Reichs-Grenadierdivision "Hoch- und Deutschmeister" unter Führung des Generalleutnants Franek mit einem unterstellten Bataillon des Grenadier-Regiments (mot.) 8 und einer Kampfgruppe unter Führung des Oberst Baade besonders ausgezeichnet.||Northwest in the tough multi-day defensive battles at Cassino, the 44th Reichs-Grenadier Division "Hoch- und Deutschmeister" under the leadership of Lieutenant General Franek with a subordinate battalion of the Grenadier Regiment (mot) 8 and a battle group under the leadership of Colonel Baade particularly distinguished themselves.|
|27 May 1944||In den Kämpfen der letzten Tage hat sich die schon bei Cassino bewährte 90. Panzergrenadierdivision unter Führung von Generalmajor Baade mit unterstellten Verbänden des Heeres und der Luftwaffe erneut besonders ausgezeichnet.||In combat of the recent days, the 90th Mechanized Infantry Division which has already proven itself at Cassino, led by Major General Baade, with subordinated units of the Army and the Air Force has again particularly distinguished itself.|
Footnotes and references
- von Senger und Etterlin (1960)
- Mitcham (2007) pp. 76–77
- Hapgood & Richardson (1984) p.176
- Hapgood & Richardson (1984) p.233
- Thomas and Wegmann (1987) p.140
- Berger (2000) p.9
- Patzwall and Scherzer (2001) p.19
- Thomas (1997) p.12
- Scherzer (2007) p.196
- Die Wehrmachtberichte 1939–1945 Band 3, p.30
- Die Wehrmachtberichte 1939–1945 Band 3, p.111
- Atkinson, Rick (2007). The Day of Battle – The War in Sicily and Italy 1943–1944. London: Little, Brown. ISBN 978-0-316-72560-6.
- Berger, Florian (1999). Mit Eichenlaub und Schwertern. Die höchstdekorierten Soldaten des Zweiten Weltkrieges [With Oak Leaves and Swords. The Highest Decorated Soldiers of the Second World War] (in German). Vienna, Austria: Selbstverlag Florian Berger. ISBN 978-3-9501307-0-6.
- 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.
- Hapgood, David & Richardson, David (1984) Monte Cassino, New York: Congdon & Weed, Inc. ISBN 0-86553-105-6.
- Mitcham, Samuel W. (2007) Rommel's Desert Commanders – The Men Who Served the Desert Fox, North Africa, 1941–42. Mechanicsburg, PA: Stackpole Books. ISBN 0-8117-3510-9.
- Patzwall, Klaus D.; Scherzer, Veit (2001). Das Deutsche Kreuz 1941 – 1945 Geschichte und Inhaber Band II [The German Cross 1941 – 1945 History and Recipients Volume 2] (in German). Norderstedt, Germany: Verlag Klaus D. Patzwall. ISBN 978-3-931533-45-8.
- Plehwe, Friedrich-Karl von (1998) Das eigenständige Leben des Generals Ernst-Günther Baade. Schäuble, Rheinfelden. ISBN 3-87718-249-6.
- Schaulen, Fritjof (2003). Eichenlaubträger 1940 – 1945 Zeitgeschichte in Farbe I Abraham – Huppertz [Oak Leaves Bearers 1940 – 1945 Contemporary History in Color I Abraham – Huppertz] (in German). Selent, Germany: Pour le Mérite. ISBN 978-3-932381-20-1.
- 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 [The Knight's Cross Bearers 1939–1945 The Holders of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross 1939 by Army, Air Force, Navy, Waffen-SS, Volkssturm and Allied Forces with Germany According to the Documents of the Federal Archives] (in German). Jena, Germany: Scherzers Miltaer-Verlag. ISBN 978-3-938845-17-2.
- von Senger und Etterlin F. (1960) Krieg in Europa, translated by George Malcolm as Neither Fear nor Hope, Macdonald & Co. Ltd., London, 1963
- Thomas, Franz; Wegmann, Günter (1987). Die Ritterkreuzträger der Deutschen Wehrmacht 1939–1945 Teil III: Infanterie Band 1: A–Be [The Knight's Cross Bearers of the German Wehrmacht 1939–1945 Part III: Infantry Volume 1: A–Be] (in German). Osnabrück, Germany: Biblio-Verlag. ISBN 978-3-7648-1153-2.
- Thomas, Franz (1997). Die Eichenlaubträger 1939–1945 Band 1: A–K [The Oak Leaves Bearers 1939–1945 Volume 1: A–K] (in German). Osnabrück, Germany: Biblio-Verlag. ISBN 978-3-7648-2299-6.
- Die Wehrmachtberichte 1939–1945 Band 3, 1. Januar 1944 bis 9. Mai 1945 (in German), München: Deutscher Taschenbuch Verlag GmbH & Co. KG, 1985. ISBN 3-423-05944-3.
Media related to Ernst-Günther Baade at Wikimedia Commons
- Ernst-Günther Baade in the German National Library catalogue
- World War II Awards
- Ritterkreuzträger 1939–45
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