by Martin Block

19.5.1943
OKH/GenStdH/Org.Abt. orders formation of Sturm-Div. Rhodos. The Division is authorized to have a Pz.Abt. Rhodos consisting of
- Stab and Stabs-Kp. [new unit]
- 1.(Stu.Gesch.) Kp. [former Stu.Gesch.Bttr. 92, renamed from Stu.Gesch.Bttr. 287 on 27.4.1943]
- 2.(Pz.) Kp. [new unit]
- 3.(Pz.Jg.) Kp. [former Pz.Jg.Kp. Rhodos]

21.5.1943
OKH/Chef H Ruest u BdE/AHA orders organizational transfer of Stu.Gesch.Bttr. 92 (ex Stu.Gesch.Bttr. 287) from Gren.Rgt.(mot) 92 to Sturm-Div. Rhodos and renaming to 1.(Stu.Gesch.)/Pz.Abt. Rhodos.
Wehrkreiskdo. III is tasked to immediately organize the company in accordance with K.St.N. 1158 v. 10.4.1943 less the 4th platoon and 4 instead of 5 StuG in the 1st to 3rd platoons:
- Kp.Trupp = 2 StuG
- 1. Zug = 4 StuG
- 2. Zug = 4 StuG
- 3. Zug = 4 StuG
- Geräte-Reserve = 1 StuG (w/o crew)
As soon as the 15 Sturmgeschuetze will have been delivered the company is to be transported to the area of Ob. Suedost.
Sometime during the following months - the exact date could not be established - 3 Sturmhaubitzen 42 were added to the authorized equipment of the company.

22.5.1943
OKH/Chef H Ruest u BdE/AHA orders formation of the Stab, Stabskp. and 2.(Pz.)/Pz.Abt. Rhodos by Wehrkreiskdo. V at Pz.Ausb.u.Ers.Abt. 7 in Boeblingen until 2.6.1943.
The Stab Pz.Abt. Rhodos is to be formed in accordance with K.St.N. 1107 v. 1.11.1941
The Stabskp. Pz.Abt. Rhodos is to be formed in accordance with K.St.N. 1150b v. 25.1.1943 (Nachr.Zug = 3 Pz.Bef.Wg. III 5 cm L/42) less the Aufklaerungszug, Pi.- and Fla-Zug. The Kfz.-Instandsetzungsgruppe is replaced by a Instandsetzungsstaffel.
The 2.(Pz.)/Pz.Abt. Rhodos is to be formed using a 'Personaleinheit m.Pz.Kp. (1175a)' which had already been formed by Pz.Ausb.u.Ers.Abt. 25 upon BdE/AHA orders dated 12.4.1943.
The company is to be organized in accordance with K.St.N. 1175a v. 25.1.1943:
- Kp.Trupp = 2 Pz.Kpfw. IV
- 1. Zug = 4 Pz.Kpfw. IV
- 2. Zug = 4 Pz.Kpfw. IV
- 3. Zug = 4 Pz.Kpfw. IV
- Geräte-Reserve = 1 Pz.Kpfw. IV (w/o crew)

More details about the renaming of the Pz.Jg.Kp. Rhodos to 3.(Pz.Jg.)/Pz.Abt. Rhodos are missing. Initially there seem to habe been plans to equip the company with 9 'Marder' type self-propelled guns, but by order of OKH/GenStdH/Org.Abt. dated 9.6.1943 the company was to keep its 9 towed 5 cm Pak 38 guns.

27.5.1943
15 Pzkpfw. IV are shipped from an ordnance depot to the 2./Pz.Abt. Rhodos still based in Germany.

The exact shipment dates for Pz.Bef.Wg. III 5 cm L/42 for the Stabskp. and the StuG III Ausf. G and StuH 42 for the 1./Pz.Abt. Rhodos could not be established.
Records of the German Quartermaster General (Gen.Qu.) however show that Stab, Stabskp., 1. and 2./Pz.Abt. Rhodos with 3 Pz.Bef.Wg. III 5 cm L/42, 15 StuG III Ausf. G, 3 StuH 42 and 15 Pz.Kpfw. IV with 7,5 cm L/48 guns had arrived on the Island of Rhodes between 20.7. and 31.7.1943.

September 1943
Between 10.9. and 20.9.1943 the number of StuG III in the 1.(Stu.Gesch.)/Pz.Abt. Rhodos dropped from 15 to 13. They were probably lost during the fighting against Italian troops on the island from 9. - 11.9.1943 which did cost the Sturm-Div. Rhodos a total of 66 dead, 53 wounded and 1 missing in action.
During the month the 3.(Pz.Jg.)/Pz.Abt. Rhodos added 3 Italian anti-tank guns of unspecified caliber to its inventory.

November 1943
A "leichter Pz.Aufkl.Zug" is added to Pz.Abt. Rhodos using captured Italian equipment. It consists of 4 machine gun armed CV 35 light tanks and 2 armored vehicles described as 'M304'.

February 1944
The medium anti-tank guns of the 3.(Pz.Jg.)/Pz.Abt. Rhodos are replaced by heavy 7,5 cm Pak 40 with 'Maultier' trucks as towing vehicles.
The "leichter Pz.Aufkl.Zug" of Pz.Abt. Rhodos now reports having 3 CV 35 and 3 'M304'.

May 1944
The "leichter Pz.Aufkl.Zug" of Pz.Abt. Rhodos now reports having 4 CV 35 and 3 'M304'.

June 1944
The "leichter Pz.Aufkl.Zug" of Pz.Abt. Rhodos disappears from the order of battle chart. It could not be established if it was disbanded or became assigned to a different unit.
The number of 7,5 cm Pak 40 in the 3.(Pz.Jg.)/Pz.Abt. Rhodos increases to 10.

1.9.1944
Pz.Abt. Rhodos reports having 3 Pz.Bef.Wg. III, 13 StuG III, 3 StuH 42, 15 Pz.Kpfw. IV and 10 7,5 cm Pak available.

17.10.1944
OKH/GenStdH/Org.Abt. orders large elements of Sturm-Div. Rhodos to be used for the formation of Pz.Gren.Div. Brandenburg. Sturm-Div. Rhodos is officially declared as disbanded. Elements not transfered to Pz.Gren.Div. Brandenburg, a. o. Pz.Abt. Rhodos, remain on the Island of Rhodes.

9.12.1944
OKH/GenStdH/Org.Abt. orders summarization of German army units remaining on the Island of Rhodes into Pz.Gren.Brig. Rhodos.

15.3.1945
The last known status report of Pz.Gren.Brig. Rhodos shows Pz.Abt. Rhodos with 3 Pz.Bef.Wg. III, 13 StuG III, 3 StuH 42, 7 Pz.Kpfw. IV and 9 7,5 cm Pak available. The fate of the 'missing' 8 Pz.Kpfw. IV and one 7,5 cm Pak could not be established.

8.5.1945
German troops on the Island of Rhodes surrender to British Forces.

Sources

Monthly status reports of Sturm-Div. Rhodos and Pz.Gren.Brig. Rhodos and various other German war time documents obtained from the BA-MA Freiburg and NARA Washington.

Reference material on this unit

- None known at this time -

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