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Fritz Biegi 18 January 1918 – 16 March 1945 (1945-03-17) (aged 27) Place of birth Bechtheim, Germany Place of death Leobschütz, Poland Allegiance Nazi Germany Service/branch Waffen SS Years of service 1939–1945 Waffen SS Rank Standartenoberjunker Unit 5th SS Panzer Division Wiking Battles/wars World War II Awards Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross Iron Cross 1st Class Iron Cross 2nd Class Close Combat Clasp in Bronze Infantry Assault Badge Eastern Front Medal 1941/42 [1] Fritz Biegi was a Standartenoberjunker in the Waffen SS during World War II who was awarded the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross. Which was awarded to recognize extreme battlefield bravery or successful military leadership by Nazi Germany during World War II. Contents 1 Early life 2 World War II 2.1 Knight's Cross 3 References 4 Further reading Early life Fritz Biegi was born on 8 January 1918, in Bechtheim in Hesse-Nassau. After he finished school he joined the Reich Labour Service until March 1938. He then volunteered to join the SS-VT in April 1938 and was posted to the 7th Company, SS Standarte Germania.[1] [2] World War II In 1939 Biegi took part in the Polish Campaign and the Battle of France and was promoted to Unterscharführer in July 1941.[1][2] He also took part in Operation Barbarossa the invasion of the Soviet Union and was awarded the Iron Cross 2nd class in July 1941, the Infantry Assault Badge in February 1942, the Iron Cross 1st class in October 1942.[1][2] In April 1943 he was awarded the Close Combat Clasp in Bronze which was awarded for 15 days of hand to hand fighting at close quarters.[1][2] In October 1943 when the Division was restructured he was now in the 5th Company, 9th SS Panzer Grenadier Regiment Germania.[1] Knight's Cross Biegi was awarded the Knight's Cross for his actions in February 1944, Germania were given the task of defending the town of Orlewez to the west of Smela.[1][2] Intelligence had suggested to expect the Soviet attack on the night of the 2 February, the attack came at 20:00 hours during a severe storm which succeeded in breaking the German line on the right. Biegi seeing that the front was liable to collapse collected a machine gun from a dead Grenadier and engaged the advancing Soviet forces at a distance of 20 meters, firing the machine gun from the hip. He advanced alone along the captured front line throwing hand grenades which destroyed three Soviet machine guns and cleared the line.[1] In the following twelve hours Biegi and his platoon defended the line from Soviet attacks against their front and rear successfully. The next morning when the German reserves managed to link up with them they found more than 100 Soviet dead and 3 guns destroyed, 10 machine guns and 6 grenade launchers captured and forty prisoners of war.[1] In March 1945 he was promoted to Standartenoberjunker and posted to the staff of the 18th SS Volunteer Panzergrenadier Division "Horst Wessel", but was killed in action shortly afterwards on the 16 March 1945.[1][2] References ^ a b c d e f g h i j "ritterkreuztraeger".  ^ a b c d e f "frontkjemper".  Further reading Fellgiebel, Walther-Peer. Die Träger des Ritterkreuzes des Eisernen Kreuzes 1939-1945. Friedburg, Germany: Podzun-Pallas, 2000. ISBN 3-7909-0284-5. Hamilton Charles Leaders and Personalities of the Third Reich, R James Bender Pub 1997 , ISBN 0912138270 Kurowski Franz Panzer Aces II Stackpole Books, 2004, ISBN 0811731758 Mitcham, Jr.Samuel, Retreat to the Reich, Stackpole books 2007. ISBN 081173384X Henschler Henri & Fay Will, Armor Battles of the Waffen-SS, 1943-45 Stackpole Books, 2003. ISBN 0811729052 Mitcham Samuel, The German Defeat in the East, 1944-45,Stackpole Books, 2007. ISBN 0811733718 Persondata Name Biegi, Fritz Alternative names Short description Date of birth 18 January 1918 Place of birth Bechtheim, Germany Date of death 16 March 1945 Place of death Leobschütz, Poland