103rd SS Heavy Panzer Battalion
|103rd SS Heavy Panzer Battalion|
|Active||August 1944 - May 1945|
|Part of||III (Germanic) SS Panzer Corps|
103rd SS Heavy Panzer Battalion was originally formed on 1 July 1943 as the II.Battalion, 11 SS Panzer Regiment and sent to Yugoslavia to fight as infantry, however, at the end of November, the battalion was converted back to the Tanks.
The Battalion was then issued six Tiger I tanks in February for training, but then ordered to give them to another unit in March 1944. Another six Tiger Is arrived at the training grounds on 26 May and four more in August. On 20 October, all ten Tigers were given to the training unit and the 103rd was outfitted with the Tiger II before being ordered to the Eastern Front, as part of the III (Germanic) SS Panzer Corps. On 14 November 1944 the unit was redesignated 503rd SS Heavy Panzer Battalion. It had a total of 39 (instead of the full complement of 45) Tiger IIs and was loaded onto trains on 27 January 1945, and sent to the Eastern Front in the Army Group Vistula sector. By 15 April 1945, the 503rd reported a total of 12 Tiger IIs, of which 10 were still operational. The 503rd ended the war fighting in the Battle of Berlin as part of Kampfgruppe Mohnke.
Knight's Cross recipients
There were four members of the Battalion awarded the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross.
- Karl Brommann, Untersturmführer
- Friedrich Herzig, Sturmbannführer
- Karl Körner, Hauptscharführer
- Oskar Schäfer, Untersturmführer
- Tessin, Georg (1972). Die Landstreitkräfte 71—130. Verbände und Truppen der deutschen Wehrmacht und Waffen SS im Zweiten Weltkrieg 1939—1945. 6. Frankfurt/Main: E.S. Mittler. p. 191.