506th History - Taskforce

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506th History

Major Gerhard Willing
07.1943 - 20.10.1943 (KIA)
Kommandeur :
Major Willing  : 07.1943 - 21.10.1943
Major Lange   : 11.1943 - 01.1945
Hauptmann Heiligenstadt : 01.1945 - 09.02.1945
Hauptmann von Römer     : 02.1945 - 04.1945

Schwere Panzer Abteilung 506 - s.Pz.Abt 506

The 506th was formed in July 1943, primarily from personnel of III Abt./Pz. Rgt. 33 of 9th. Pz. Div.. In August, the battalion received forty-five new Tiger I tanks. The unit was engaged in the Dnieper battles in 1943. On New Year's Day, 1944, sPzAbt 506 went to the area south of Korovograd, and fought in Krivoi-Rog. In 1944, sPzAbt 506 was withdrawn to Germany for refitting and preparation for action in the West. Their Tiger I's were distributed as replacement vehicles to other units. sPzAbt 506 received new Tiger II Ausf B's in August 1944. The full battalion establishment of 45 tanks was retained. In late September, the battalion was sent to the area around Osterboek, west of Arnhem. It took part in the German defence against the combined Allied thrust to the Rhine during OPERATION MARKET GARDEN. The following month, sPzAbt 506 Took part in the defence of Aachen. In November 1944, the battalion was strengthened by the addition of a 4th company. This new company had been organized originally as a heavy assault support unit, used wherever necessary - a Feuerwehr (fire brigade). Its first commander was named Hummel, and this was the name given to the company. sPzKp. "Hummel" (now 4th company, sPzAbt 506) was equipped with Tiger I's. This new company was fully integrated by early December 1944. The only Heer Tiger battalion to take part in the Ardennes offensive was sPzAbt 506. It took part in the defense of Germany and finally surrendered to US forces in the Ruhr pocket on April of 1945.

Schwere Panzer Kompanie Hummel
The Allied drive out of Normandy decimated the units trapped in the 'Falaise Gap' and the remnants trying to cross the Seine river. With open space all the way to Berlin, the schwere Panzer Kompanie Einzats Dunkirchen was hastily formed by the schwere Panzer Erzats und Ausbildungs Abteilung 500 at the training grounds near Paderborn. This unit with 14 Tigers was sent west on 19 September to stop the British spearhead at Arnhem in Holland. It was renamed the next day, sPzKp Hummel and continued to fight on the Western Front after it was incorporated into sPzAbt.506 as the 4.Kompanie on 8.December 1944. Training and research/development units had originally received a total of 49 Tiger Is for training and 10 Tiger I's for testing. As Germany's position continued to deteriorate, additional units were thrown together and given these worn out tigers in a last ditch effort. Amongst these units were: sPzKp.Paderborn with 15 Tigers on 21 October 1944, PzKp.Panther with three Tigers (30 January 1945), Erzats Brigade Grossdeutschland with two Tigers (31 January 1945), and PzAbt.500 Paderborn with 17 Tigers (both I's and II's - 2 April 1945).

Abteilung 506 - Details
8 May 43 Formed in WK XVII (St. Pölten) by reorganization and redesignation of III / Panzer-Regiment 33,
9. Panzer-Division.
16-27 Aug 43 Delivery of 45 Tiger I's.
9-12 Sep 43 Entrained for the Eastern Front.
17-20 Sep 43 Arrival in Zaporozhe, assigned to XVII. Armeekorps
20 Oct 43 7 of 36 Tigers operational.
25 Dec 43 27 surviving Tigers railed to Kirovograd area
29-30 Jan 44 12 Tigers delivered, 22 on strength
4 Feb 44 After road march to the area west of Cherkassy the attempt to relieve the Cherkassy (Korsun Pocket) begins
9 Feb 44 5 Tigers delivered
17 Feb 44 Relief attempt partially succeeds
1 Mar 44 Abteilung transfers remaining Tigers of s.Pz.Abt 503 and is transferred to Lvov for rebuilding
8 Apr 44 45 Tigers delivered
2-10 Apr 44 Combat under 100. Jüger Division
31 May 44 Army Group North Ukraine with 41 Tiger Is (39 operational)
27-28 Jul 44 6 remaining Tigers transferred to s.Pz.Abt 507
15 Aug 44 Ordered returned to Germany for re-equipment with Tiger IIs at Ohrdruf (WK IX)
12 Sep 44 Equipped with 45 Tiger IIs
22-24 Sep 44 Arrival in Arnhem, Netherlands area, subordinated to II. SS-Panzerkorps
20 Oct 44 18 of 35 Tiger IIs operational
2 Nov 44 2 Tiger IIs received from II. SS-Panzerkorps
8 Dec 44 4./ formed from schwere Panzer-Kompanie Hummel with Tiger Is
8-13 Dec 44 12 Tiger IIs delivered, 47 Tigers on hand, including 4./
21 Dec 44 Committed in support of "Wacht Am Rhein" with 46 Tigers in the direction of Bastogne
late Jan 45 Withdrawn for refitting with only 30 Tigers on strength
16 Feb 45 4./ leaves the Abteilung with its 5 Tiger I's
15 Mar 45 Army Group B with 15 Tiger IIs (2 operational)
20 Mar 45 7 Tiger IIs arrive from s.SS-Pz.Abt. 501
2 Apr 45 6 more Tigers received from s.SS-Pz.Abt. 501
14 Apr 45 Abteilung disbanded by its commander in Iserlohn

Europa: 1x 4-3-8 Pz II 506

FitE/SE: Sep I 43
Aug I 44: Withdraw
SF: Jul I 43, Greater Germany, WK XVII: Forming; Sep I 43, Greater Germany, WK XVII: Full, withdraw to East;
Aug I 44, West: Replacement Pool

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