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The 61. Infanterie-Division was formed on 8 August 1939 and mobilized as part of the 2. Welle (wave) from elements of 1. Infanterie-Division, 11. Infanterie-Division and 21. Infanterie-Division.
In April 1944, it absorbed elements of the disbanded 9. Feld-Division (L). After suffering heavy losses in Courland, the division was transported to Gotenhafen where it was reformed and redesignated 61. Volksgrenadier-Division in October 1944.

Commanders

General der Infanterie Siegfried Hänicke (1 Sep 1939 - 27 Mar 1942)
Generalmajor Franz Scheidies (27 Mar 1942 - 7 Apr 1942) (KIA) (1)
Generalleutnant Werner Hühner (7 Apr 1942 - 1 Feb 1943)
Generalleutnant Günther Krappe (1 Feb 1943 - 30 Apr 1943)
Generalleutnant Gottfried Weber (30 Apr 1943 - 1 May 1943)
Generalleutnant Günther Krappe (1 May 1943 - 11 Dec 1943)
Generalmajor Joachim Albrecht von Blücher (11 Dec 1943 - 1 Feb 1944)
Generalleutnant Günther Krappe (1 Feb 1944 - ? Oct 1944)

Operations Officers (Ia)

Oberstleutnant Josef Irkens (Aug 1939 - Feb 1940)
Hauptmann Claus von Plate (Feb 1940 - Sep 1940)
Major Joachim Clauss (30 Sep 1940 - 7 Jan 1942)
Oberstleutnant Hans Starke (7 Jan 1942 - 1 Feb 1944)
Oberstleutnant Karl Daub (15 Feb 1944 - Apr 1944) (KIA)
Unknown (Apr 1944 - Oct 1944)

Area of operations

Poland (Sep 1939 - May 1940)
Belgium (May 1940 - June 1941)
Eastern front, northern sector (June 1941 - July 1944)
Eastern front, central sector (July 1944 - Oct 1944)

Nicknames

Schild und Ordensritter (Shield and Knight)

Holders of high awards

See 61. Volksgrenadier-Division

Order of battle (1939)

Infanterie-Regiment 151
Infanterie-Regiment 162
Infanterie-Regiment 176
Aufklärungs-Abteilung 161
Artillerie-Regiment 161
- I. Abteilung
- II. Abteilung
- III. Abteilung
- IV. Abteilung
Pionier-Bataillon 161
Panzerabwehr-Abteilung 161
Nachrichten-Abteilung 161
Versorgungseinheiten 161

Order of battle (1942)

Grenadier-Regiment 151
Grenadier-Regiment 162
Grenadier-Regiment 176
Schnelle Abteilung 161
Artillerie-Regiment 161
- I. Abteilung
- II. Abteilung
- III. Abteilung
- IV. Abteilung
Pionier-Bataillon 161
Nachrichten-Abteilung 161
Versorgungseinheiten 161

Order of battle (1943-1945)

Grenadier-Regiment 151
Grenadier-Regiment 162
Grenadier-Regiment 176
Füsilier-Bataillon 161
Artillerie-Regiment 161
- I. Abteilung
- II. Abteilung
- III. Abteilung
- IV. Abteilung
Pionier-Bataillon 161
Panzerjäger-Abteilung 161
Nachrichten-Abteilung 161
Feldersatz-Bataillon 161
Versorgungseinheiten 161

Footnotes

1. Generalmajor Franz Scheidies was killed 7 April 1942 by a Soviet sniper near Gluschitza.

Sources used

French Maclean - Quiet Flows the Rhine: German General Officer Casualties in World War II
Georg Tessin - Verbände und Truppen der deutschen Wehrmacht 1933-1945

Reference material on this unit

Walther Hubatsch - Die 61. Infanterie Division 1939-1945: Ein Bericht in Wort und Bild
Walther Hubatsch - 61. Infanterie Division: Kampf und Opfer ostpreußischer Soldaten

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