The Schwere Panzer-Abteilung 509 was formed in September 1943 around a cadre from 22. Panzer-Division. It fought on the Eastern front, seeing action at Kirovograd, Kiev and Pavlova. It was attached to SS Panzer Division Das Reich in November 1943.

It was refitted with Tiger II (Köningstiger) tanks in December 1944 and January 1945 before being attached to IV SS Panzerkorps and sent to Hungary. It fought in Hungary and Austria before surrendering to the Americans at the end of the war with no surviving tanks.

Commanders

Hauptmann Hannibal von Lüttichau (May ? / Sep ? 1943 - ? Oct 1943)
Major Kurt Gierga (? Nov 1943 - 15 Jan 1944) (WIA during attack on Ljubar)
Oberleutnant Ernst-Nordewin von Diest-Koerber (15 Jan 1944 - 26 Feb 1944) [m.d.F.b.]
Hauptmann Radtke (26 Feb 1944 - 3 or 4 Mar 1944) (KIA)
Oberleutnant d.R. Dr. Johannes ? König (3 / 4 Mar 1944 - 15 Mar 1944) [m.d.F.b.]
Hauptmann Hans-Jürgen Burmester (15 Mar 1944 - 18 Jan 1945) (WIA)
Oberleutnant d.R. Dr. Johannes ? König [Führer] (18 Jan 1945 - 21 Jan 1945)
SS-Hauptsturmführer Leibel [Führer] (21 Jan 1945 - ? Jan 1945) (2)
Hauptmann Hans-Jürgen Burmester (between 21 and 27 Jan 1945 - 26 Feb 1945) (3)
Hauptmann d.R. Dr. Johannes ? König (26 Feb 1945 - 9 May 1945)

Area of operations

Eastern front (Sep 1943 - Jan 1945)
Hungary & Austria (Jan 1945 - May 1945)

Campaign New issue Transfers in Transfers out Combat loss Type of tank
Eastern Front 97 13 62 48 Tiger I
Eastern Front 56 5 11 50 Tiger II

 

Holders of high awards

Holders of the Commendation Certificate of the Commander-in-Chief of the Army (1)
- Klaus, Walter, 25.11.1944 (4602), Feldwebel, Halbzugführer i. d. 1./s.Pz.Abt. 509
Holders of the German Cross in Gold (8)
- Beloch, Ernst, 19.10.1944, Feldwebel, 2./s.Pz.Abt. 509
- Diest-Koerber von, Dr. agr. Ernst-Nordewin, 17.02.1944, Oberleutnant, 3./s.Pz.Abt. 509
- Gierga, Kurt, 02.03.1944, Major, s.Pz.Abt. 509
- König, Johannes, 28.05.1944, Oberleutnant d.R., 2./s.Pz.Abt. 509
- Klaus, Walter, 09.03.1945, Oberfeldwebel, 1./s.Pz.Abt. 509
- Lill, Hans, 20.05.1944, Oberleutnant, Stab/s.Pz.Abt. 509
- Neuhaus, Gustav, 22.03.1945, Oberfeldwebel, 2./s.Pz.Abt. 509
- Pech, Hans-Jochen, 25.08.1944, Leutnant, s.Pz.Abt. 509
Holders of the Knight's Cross (3)
- Burmester, Hans-Jürgen 02.09.1944 Hauptmann Kdr s.Pz.Abt 509
- Litzke, Erich 20.10.1944 Oberfeldwebel Zugführer i. d. 2./s.Pz.Abt 509
- Tischendorf, Herbert 11.03.1945 Hauptmann KpChef i. d. s.Pz.Abt 509

Notable members

Eric Litztke (usually credited with 76 destroyed tanks but the exact number is unknown)

A Tiger being resupplied with ammunition and fuel in August 1944
spz-abt-509-fuel
(Courtesy of Bundesarchiv/Wikimedia, licensed under Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3 0 Germany)

Footnotes

1. Hans-Jürgen Burmester was WIA south of JENÖ/Hungary, Höhen 197 and 188, same day, 18 January 1945, Hptm Herbert Tischendorf, WIA.
2. From 3. SS-Pz.Div. "Totenkopf"; appointed to relieve König.
3. Checked himself out of the hospital and took over command again in January; promoted to Major and received a new assignment per 26 February 1945.

Sources used

Ron Klages - Trail of the Tigers
Wolfgang Schneider - Tigers in combat (2 vol)
Georg Tessin - Verbände und Truppen der deutschen Wehrmacht 1933-1945
Gordon Williamson - German Army Elite Units, 1939-45

Reference material on this unit

Артефакт - 509 ТАНКОВЫЙ БАТАЛЬОН

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