The Schwere SS-Panzer Abteilung 102 was formed in October 1943 and was attached to II SS Panzerkorps. It was sent to Normandy, where it fought the western Allies and suffered heavy losses.
It was refitted with with Tiger II (Köningstiger) tanks in September 1944 and redesignated Schwere SS-Panzer Abteilung 502.

It was attached to Heeresgruppe Mitte and sent to the Eastern front in March 1945.

Commanders

SS-Sturmbannführer Anton Laackmann (? Jan 1944 - ? Mar 1944)
SS-Sturmbannführer Hans Weiss (? Mar 1944 - 18 Aug 1944)
SS-Sturmbannführer Kurt Hartrampf (? Aug 1944 - ? May 1945)

Area of operations

France (June 1944 - Sep 1944)
Germany (Sep 1944 - Mar 1945)
Eastern front (Mar 1945 - May 1945)

Campaign New issue Transfers in Transfers out Combat loss Type of tank
Western Front 51 0 6 45 Tiger I
Eastern Front 37 0 6 31 Tiger II

 

Holders of high awards

Holders of the German Cross in Gold (2)
- Egger, Paul, 30.12.1944, SS-Oberscharführer, 1./s.SS-Pz.Abt. 502
- Soretz, Hans, 25.08.1944, SS-Untersturmführer, 3./s.SS-Pz.Abt. 102
Holders of the Knight's Cross (3, including two unofficial/unconfirmed)
- Kalss, Alois 23.08.1944 SS-Obersturmführer Führer 1./s.SS-Pz.Abt 502
- Egger, Paul 28.04.1945 SS-Obersturmführer Zugführer i. d. 1./s.SS-Pz.Abt 502
[no proof in the Bundesarchiv files]
- Hartrampf, Kurt 28.04.1945 SS-Sturmbannführer Kdr s.SS-Pz.Abt 502
[no proof in the Bundesarchiv files ; according to a letter of Krätschmer (adressed to von Seemen, 07.08.1980) awarded together with Kleinheisterkamp,OL ; said to have been officially confirmed by FHQ,Berlin via a radio message on 28.04.1945 adressed to 9. Armee, Kessel von Halbe ; incoming radio messages of AOK 9 are not existing anymore ; connection to FHQ in Berlin was cut off since 05.00 in the morning on april 28th 1945 [V.S.] ; case was treated by the Ordenskommission of the OdR in 1980 and decision was made (obviously mainly based on the Krätschmer letter) : “ja, 28.4.1945”]

Notable members

Paul Egger (usually credited with 113 destroyed tanks but the exact number is unknown)
Ernst Glagow (usually credited with 51+ destroyed tanks but the exact number is unknown)

Officers serving in the Einsatzgruppen

Einsatzgruppen 1
(includes officers serving in the Einsatzgruppen either prior to or after service in this unit)

Tiger tank of Schwere SS-Panzer Abteilung 102

wss-502abt-1943
(Courtesy of Bundesarchiv/Wikimedia, licensed under Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0 Germany)

Tiger tank from Schwere SS-Panzer Abteilung 102 near Charkow in April 1943
wss-spz-abt-502-russia-1943
(Courtesy of Bundesarchiv/Wikimedia, licensed under Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0 Germany)

Sources used

Ron Klages - Trail of the Tigers
Terry Goldsworthy - Valhalla's Warriors: A history of the Waffen-SS on the Eastern Front 1941-1945
Wolfgang Schneider - Tigers in combat (2 vol)

Reference material on this unit

Rüdiger Warnick & Stephan Cazenave - Tiger! Von schwere Kompanie/SS-Pz.Rgt.2 bis s.SS-Panzerabteilung 102/502

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