Hans Freiherr von Funck

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Hans Freiherr von Funck
Born (1891-12-23)23 December 1891
Aachen
Died 14 February 1979(1979-02-14) (aged 87)
Viersen
Allegiance German Empire German Empire (to 1918)
Germany Weimar Republic (to 1933)
Nazi Germany Nazi Germany
Service/branch Heer
Years of service 1914–1945
Rank General der Panzertruppe
Commands held 7th Panzer Division
XXXXVII. Panzerkorps
Battles/wars World War I
Spanish Civil War
World War II
Awards Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves

General Hans Emil Richard Freiherr von Funck[a] (23 December 1891 – 14 February 1979) was a highly decorated Panzer General in the German army during World War II.

Biography[edit]

Early life and the Great War[edit]

After attendance at the high school in Köslin. From Easter 1911 until the summer of 1914 he studied law at Greifswald and Freiburg. On 2 August 1914 he joined the 1st Brandenburg Dragoon Regiment as an officer cadet and on 18 June 1915 he was commissioned as a Leutnant. During World War I he was awarded the Iron Cross Class I and II.

Interwar period[edit]

He was retained in the Reichswehr after the war and in 1923 was promoted to Oberleutnant. From 1926 he worked in the Reichswehr Ministry in the Army Training Division (T4). On 1 July 1933 he was appointed as the Adjutant of the Chief of the army and the following year, Major on the General Staff. In 1936 he served in the Spanish Civil War as a leader of the German National Army in Spain. He was also the military attaché at headquarters of the National Government in Spain. At the beginning of 1939 he was appointed Military attache to the German Embassy in Lisbon.

Second World War[edit]

In 1939 he was promoted to Oberst. In 1940 he was appointed as the commander of the 3rd Panzer Brigade.

In 1941 he was promoted to Generalmajor and given command of the 7th Panzer Division as the successor to Erwin Rommel. He held this command on the central and southern sections of the Eastern Front. On 15 July 1941 he received the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross in recognition of his actions at Vilnius and Bialystok-Minsk-Wjasna. For his role in operations at the Don and Donets basins, on 14 March 1943 he was awarded the German Cross in Gold and on 1 February 1944 he was promoted to General der Panzertruppe and appointed as the commanding general of the XXXXVII Panzer Corps, initially on the eastern and later the western fronts. On 4 September 1944 he was moved into the reserve of the OKH. Following the war Funck was held as a prisoner by the Soviets from August 1945 until his release ten years later in 1955.

Personal life[edit]

On 6 November 1915 Funck was married in Göttingen. His first marriage ended in divorce in 1939. In 1940 he married for a second time to Maria Freiin of Mirbach.

Awards[edit]

Footnotes[edit]

  • a Regarding personal names: Freiherr is a title, translated as Baron, not a first or middle name. The female forms are Freifrau and Freiin.

References[edit]

Citations
  1. ^ a b Scherzer 2007, p. 324.
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. 
  • 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.