8 January 1899|
|Died||27 June 1944
|Allegiance|| German Empire (to 1918)
Weimar Republic (to 1920)
Nazi Germany (to 1944)
|Years of service||1916–1920
|Commands held||Grenadier-Regiment 427|
|Awards||Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves|
|Other work||Bank clerk|
Willy Wesche (8 January 1899 – 27 June 1944) was a highly decorated Oberst in the Wehrmacht during World War II, and one of only 882 recipients of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves. The Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross and its higher grade Oak Leaves was awarded to recognise extreme battlefield bravery or successful military leadership. Willy Wesche was killed on 27 June 1944 in Bobruysk, Belarus during the Bobruysk Offensive. he was posthumously awarded the Oak Leaves to his Knight's Cross on 6 August 1944.
Awards and decorations
- Honour Cross of the World War 1914/1918
- Iron Cross (1939)
- 2nd Class (15 August 1941)
- 1st Class (4 October 1941)
- Eastern Front Medal
- Infantry Assault Badge
- Close Combat Clasp
- in Bronze
- in Silver
- German Cross in Gold (20 July 1942)
- Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves
- Fellgiebel 2000, p. 360.
- Fellgiebel 2000, p. 73.
- 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.