Fritz Kraemer

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For the American military educator, see Fritz G. A. Kraemer.
Fritz Kraemer
Born 12 December 1900
Stettin, Province of Pomerania, Kingdom of Prussia, German Empire now Szczecin, West Pomeranian Voivodeship, Poland
Died 23 June 1959(1959-06-23) (aged 58)
Hamburg, West Germany
Allegiance  German Empire (to 1918)
 Weimar Republic (to 1933)
 Nazi Germany
Service/branch Heer (1918–44)
Waffen SS (1944–45)
Years of service 1918–45
Rank SS-Brigadeführer Collar Rank.svg SS-Brigadeführer
Commands held I. SS-Panzer Corps Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler
12th SS Panzer Division Hitlerjugend

World War II

Awards Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross

SS-Brigadeführer Fritz Kraemer (12 December 1900 – 23 June 1959) was a German Waffen-SS and Heer officer, and a commander of the I. SS-Panzer Corps Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler and the 12.SS-Panzer-Division Hitlerjugend. He was also a winner of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross.

Early life - Pre-war service[edit]

Kraemer was born in Stettin. He joined the Wehrmacht in 1918 and later attended the Berlin War Academy. In 1936 he was appointed the commander of 5.Kompanie/Infanterieregiment 55 and by 1939 was reassigned to the 13. Infanterie Division (mot).

Early war campaigns[edit]

Kraemer distinguished himself during the invasion of Poland and the campaign in the west. He won the Iron Cross second class and the Iron Cross first class on 6 October 1939 and 26 May 1940 respectively. On 11 October 1940 he was promoted to Ia (chief assistant, operations) of the 13. Infantry Division which was the same day reorganized into the 13. Panzer Division.

War in Russia[edit]

During the operations in Russia with the 13. Panzer Division, Fritz Kraemer once again proved himself to be an excellent commander and in 1942 was awarded both the German Cross in Gold and the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross. Although he was a Heer officer, in January 1943, Josef "Sepp" Dietrich selected Kraemer as the senior administrative officer (Ia) of the I.SS-Panzer Korps with the rank of SS-Oberführer. Soon Dietrich realized that Fritz Kraemer was an ideal choice for this position and officially admitted him into the SS on 1 August 1944. He was given the rank of SS-Brigadeführer.

Western Front and postwar[edit]

During the battles in Normandy, Krämer acted as Dietrich’s deputy, and eventually succeeded Hubert Meyer as commander of the 12. SS-Panzerdivision Hitlerjugend. However, he was in charge of the division only until 13 November 1944 when he was transferred to the reserves and Hugo Kraas assumed command of the division. For the remainder of the war, Kraemer served as a chief of staff with the 6. Panzer-Armee and surrendered to the Americans, along with Dietrich, in May 1945. He was tried at Dachau in 1946 for the involvement in the Malmedy Massacre and was sentenced to a ten-year imprisonment. Following his release, he lived in Höxter, Germany until his death. Kraemer was buried with full military honors.

Dates of rank[edit]

Notable decorations[edit]



  1. ^ Fellgiebel 2000, p. 271.
  2. ^ Scherzer 2007, p. 469.
  3. ^ Von Seemen 1976, p. 205.


  • Fellgiebel, Walther-Peer (2000). Die Träger des Ritterkreuzes des Eisernen Kreuzes 1939–1945 — Die Inhaber der höchsten Auszeichnung des Zweiten Weltkrieges aller Wehrmachtteile [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. 
  • 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. 
  • 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 Seemen, Gerhard (1976). Die Ritterkreuzträger 1939–1945 : die Ritterkreuzträger sämtlicher Wehrmachtteile, Brillanten-, Schwerter- und Eichenlaubträger in der Reihenfolge der Verleihung : Anhang mit Verleihungsbestimmungen und weiteren Angaben [The Knight's Cross Bearers 1939–1945 : The Knight's Cross Bearers of All the Armed Services, Diamonds, Swords and Oak Leaves Bearers in the Order of Presentation: Appendix with Further Information and Presentation Requirements] (in German). Friedberg, Germany: Podzun-Verlag. ISBN 978-3-7909-0051-4. 
  • Yerger, Mark C. - Waffen-SS Commanders: Army, Corps, and Divisional Leaders, Vol.1 - Atglen, PA: Schiffer Military History, 1999 - pp. 326–327

External links[edit]

  • "SS-Brigadeführer Fritz Kraemer," [1]
Military offices
Preceded by
SS-Oberstgruppenführer Sepp Dietrich
Commander of I. SS-Panzer Corps Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler
9 August 1944 – 16 August 1944
Succeeded by
SS-Obergruppenführer Georg Keppler
Preceded by
SS-Obersturmbannführer Hubert Meyer
Commander of 12th SS Panzer Division Hitlerjugend
24 October 1944 – 13 November 1944
Succeeded by
SS-Brigadeführer Hugo Kraas