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Generalleutnant Ernst-Günther Baade (20 August 18978 May 1945) was a Germanmarker general serving during World War II. He was wounded in action and died from his injuries on the last day of World War II in Europe.

Military career

World War I

Ernst-Günther Baade volunteered for military service in 1914 at the age of seventeen and joined the 9th Ulanenregiment [light cavalry]. Baade distinguished himself in the fighting on the Eastern Front and was chosen for officer candidate training. He was commissioned as Leutnant in August 1916. In 1918 he transferred to the Western front where he was wounded during a poison gas attack.

World War II

On 6 March 1942 Baade was assigned to officers active reserve (Führer-Reserve). He subsequently transferred to the 15th Panzer Division in North Africa and took command of 115th Rifle Regiment on 15 April 1942, at that time committed to action in Libyamarker and Cyrenaica.

Colonel Baade distinguished himself on 27 May 1942 by his leadership and decision making, checking an armored attack into the rear of the 15th Panzer Division. A battalion of the regiment under his command managed to infiltrate into Bir Hacheimmarker on the next day, defeating the British opponents after 24 hours of bitter fighting. Col. Baade was awarded the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross for these actions.

He was again wounded on 28 July 1942 at El-Alameinmarker when his position was hit by artillery fire, then evacuated to Romemarker and Germany for a period of convalescence.

Colonel Baade was placed in charge of the defence of the Straits of Messinamarker during the successful evacuation of German forces from Sicily to the Italian mainland in early August 1943.

General Ernst-Günther Baade (seated)
Promoted to Generalmajor, Baade assumed command of 90th Infantry Division at Monte Cassinomarker. He was known for his occasionally eccentric behavior, his very small staff, his frequent front line inspection visits – all which made him popular with his troops. He was one of the few general officers who earned the wearing of a Tank Destruction Badge on his upper right sleeve for the singlehanded destruction of an enemy tank with an infantry weapon. After the retreats into northern Italy, Baade shot and killed a lower ranking SS officer who tried to give him an order, then went briefly into hiding.

Baade was wounded in the neck and lower leg by a phosphorus projectile on 24 April 1945 when his Kübelwagen was strafed by a British fighter aircraft near Neverstaven in Holstein. Baade was taken to a hospital at Bad Segebergmarker, where he succumbed to gangrene on 8 May 1945, the last day of the war.


Footnotes and references

  1. Hapgood & Richardson 1984, p. 176.
  2. Hapgood & Richardson 1984, p. 233.
  3. Scherzer 2007, p. 196.
  • Atkinson, Rick (2007). The Day of Battle - The War in Sicily and Italy 1943 - 1944. ISBN 978-0-316-72560-6.
  • Berger, Florian (2000). Mit Eichenlaub und Schwertern. Die höchstdekorierten Soldaten des Zweiten Weltkrieges (in German). Wien, Austria: Selbstverlag Florian Berger. ISBN 3-9501307-0-5.
  • Fellgiebel, Walther-Peer (2000). Die Träger des Ritterkreuzes des Eisernen Kreuzes 1939-1945 (in German). Friedburg, Germany: Podzun-Pallas, 2000. ISBN 3-7909-0284-5.
  • Hapgood, David & Richardson, David (1984). Monte Cassino. New York: Congdon & Weed, Inc. ISBN 0-86553-105-6.
  • Mitcham, Samuel W. (2007). Rommel's Desert Commanders — The Men Who Served the Desert Fox, North Africa, 1941–42. Mechanicsburg, PA: Stackpole Books. ISBN 0-8117-3510-9.
  • Patzwall, Klaus D. and Scherzer, Veit (2001). Das Deutsche Kreuz 1941 - 1945 Geschichte und Inhaber Band II (in German). Norderstedt, Germany: Verlag Klaus D. Patzwall. ISBN 3-931533-45-X.
  • Schaulen, Fritjof (2003). Eichenlaubträger 1940 - 1945 Zeitgeschichte in Farbe I Abraham - Huppertz (in German). Selent, Germany: Pour le Mérite. ISBN 3-932381-20-3.
  • Scherzer, Veit (2007). Ritterkreuzträger 1939–1945 Die Inhaber des Ritterkreuzes des Eisernen Kreuzes 1939 von Heer, Luftwaffe, Kriegsmarine, Waffen-SS, Volkssturm sowie mit Deutschland verbündeter Streitkräfte nach den Unterlagen des Bundesarchives (in German). Jena, Germany: Scherzers Miltaer-Verlag. ISBN 978-3-938845-17-2.
  • Helden der Wehrmacht III - Unsterbliche deutsche Soldaten (in German). München, Germany: FZ-Verlag GmbH, 2007. ISBN 978-3-924309-82-4.

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