logo-jager-117


The 117. Jäger-Division was formed 1 April 1943 by the reorganization and redesignation of the 717. Infanterie-Division. It was stationed in Greece and guarded the Peloponnesus until summer 1944. It took part in the withdrawal through the Balkans and suffered heavy losses during fighting with the partisans in September. It ended the war fighting on the Eastern Front and surrendered to the US Army in Austria.

Known war crimes

Troops from the division took part in a revenge operation in the Kalavryta area in Greece following the capture and murder of 81 soldiers from the division by Greek ELAS partisans in October 1943. During Unternehmen Kalawrita several villages were burned down and 677 civilians killed according to the most recent estimates. (1)

Commanders

General der Gebirgstruppen Karl von le Suire (1 May 1943 - 10 July 1944)
Generalleutnant August Wittmann (10 July 1944 - 10 Mar 1945)
Generalmajor Hans Kreppel (10 Mar 1945 - 8 May 1945)

Operations Officers (Ia)

Oberstleutnant Walter Barth (1 Apr 1943-1 Nov 1944)
Oberstleutnant Lämpe (5 Dec 1944-1945)

Area of operations

Greece (May 1943 - Sep 1944)
Balkans & Austria (Sep 1944 - May 1945)

Man power strength

Strength report for 5 April 1945:
I)Present and fit for duty: 8940
Combat strength: 6015
Trench strength: 4749
II) Weapons: 39 mGrW., 8 L.I.G., 4 s.I.G., 27 s.PAK, 36 (7,5), 10 Geb.Haub. 40 (10,5), 14 le.F.H., 18 le.F.H. 40 (10,5), 2 s.F.H. 18 (15)
III) Infantry: 2 regiments, 6 medium-strength infantry battalions, one strong replacement battalion.
IV) one average pioneer battalion, one recon battalion in formation, anti-tank battalion with 24 heavy AT guns and 12 AA guns (2 cm), one communications battalion.
V) Artillery: 7 light batteries, 1 heavy battery, 2 light batteries (equipped with 4 Geb.Kan. 36, 7,5 cm) in formation in Novsuamovska.
VI) Combat value: II
 

Holders of high awards

Holders of the German Cross in Gold (2)
- Wiesheu, Johann, 10.03.1945, Hauptmann, III./Jäg.Rgt. 749
- Wüstefeld, August, 27.04.1945, Major d.R., I./Jäg.Rgt. 737
Holders of the Honor Roll Clasp of the Heer (1)
- Möckl, Emanuel, 15.02.1945, Feldwebel, 13./Jäg.Rgt. 749
Holders of the Knight's Cross (2)
- Dauner, Klaus 16.11.1944 Oberst Kdr Jäg.Rgt 737
- Sontag, Ernst 17.04.1945 Oberst Kdr Jäg.Rgt 749

Holders of other notable badges & decorations

Holders of the Anti-Partisan Badge in Bronze (3)
- Brandt, Otto, 25.02.1945, ??, i. d. 117. Jäg.Div.
- Pucher, Franz, 01.06.1944, Unteroffizier, 13./Jäg.Rgt. 749
- Zaglmaier, Josef, 31.07.1944, Obergefreiter, StabsKp./Jg.Rgt. 749

Order of battle

Jäger-Regiment 737
Jäger-Regiment 749
Aufklärungs-Abteilung 117
Artillerie-Regiment 670
Pionier-Bataillon 117
Panzerjäger-Abteilung 117
Nachrichten-Abteilung 117
Feldersatz-Bataillon 117
Versorgungseinheiten 117

Heer Jäger Sleeve Badge
sleeve-heer-jager
(Courtesy of The Ruptured Duck)

A memorial to the victims of the Kalavryta massacre
memorial-kalavryta
(Courtesy of Markellos)

Footnotes

1. "Von Wien nach Kalavryta: Die blutige Spur der 117. Jäger-Division durch Serbien und Griechenland" by Hermann Frank Meyer, "Kalavrita 1943: Augenzeugenbericht" by Franzeska Nika, "Germany and the Second World War, Vol 5" by Rolf-Dieter Muller, Hans Umbreit, Derry Cook-Radmore & Bernhard R. Kroener, "Die juristische Aufarbeitung von NS-Verbrechen" by Kerstin Freudiger.

Sources used

NAW, T-78, Roll 305, 6256936, Kurzzustandsbericht der 117. Jg.Div. (5 April 1945)
Kerstin Freudiger - Die juristische Aufarbeitung von NS-Verbrechen
Rolf-Dieter Muller, Hans Umbreit, Derry Cook-Radmore & Bernhard R. Kroener - Germany and the Second World War, Vol 5
Hermann Frank Meyer - Von Wien nach Kalavryta: Die blutige Spur der 117. Jäger-Division durch Serbien und Griechenland
Franzeska Nika - Kalavrita 1943: Augenzeugenbericht
Georg Tessin - Verbände und Truppen der deutschen Wehrmacht 1933-1945

Reference material on this unit

- None known at this time -

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