Saturday, March 28, 2015

Stab Panzer-Brigade 103

On 24 January 1945, the Stab Panzer-Brigade 103 was assigned command over a PanzerKampfgruppe consisting of a Panzer-Regiment Stab with the II./Panzer-Regiment 9, 1.(Panther) Abteilung/PanzerRegiment 29, and 1.(Panther) Abteilung/Panzer-Regiment 39. On 20 January 1945, orders were cut for the II./PanzerRegiment 9 requiring its employment outside of its parent division. It was to be organized with two Panzer-Kompanien each with 13 Pz.IV/70 (K.St.N.1177(f.G.) dated 1Apr45) along with three Pz.Bef.Wg.IV. Fourteen Pz.Kpfw.IV were shipped from the Heeres-Zeugamt on 19 January and 26 Pz.IV/70(V) on 22 January 1945. Orders were cut on 21 January 1945 to prepare the I.Abteilung/Panzer-Regiment 29 for combat with one Kompanie of 14 Jagdpanther (K.St.N.1149a(f.G.) dated 1Apr44) and one Kompanie of 14 Pz.IV/70(A) (K.St.N.1177(f.G.) dated 1Apr44). Fourteen Jagdpanthers were shipped from the Heeres-Zeugamt on 22 January, 14 Pz.IV/70(A) on 24 January, and 2 Panthers on 25 January 1945. On 15 January, the I.Abteilung/Panzer-Regiment 39 was ordered to accelerate preparations for combat readiness, to be completed by 22 January 1945.

It was to be organized with three Panthers for the Abteilung-Stab and 14 Panthers in each of three Panzer-Kompanien (K.St.N.1177 dated 1Apr44) for a total of 45 Panthers. Forty-six Panthers were shipped from the Heeres-Zeugamt to outfit the unit in the period between 16 and 22 January 1945. Panzer-Brigade 103 was sent to Heeresgruppe Mitte in mid-January 1945. By 3 February 1945, Panzer-Brigade 103 had managed to knock out 45 enemy tanks and had destroyed or captured 65 anti-tank guns. They had lost 35 Panthers as total write-offs, with an additional 15 Panzers surrounded in Steinau. Panzer-Brigade 103 was ordered to be disbanded on 5 March 1945. On 9 March orders were issued for:

• Panzer-Brigade Stab 103 to be used to create Panzer Division Stab "Muncheberg"
• I.Abteilung/Panzer-Regiment 29 to be sent to Muncheberg without Panzers. Four Pz.Kpfw.IV were to be given to the 17.Panzer-Division, 12 Pz.IV/70 to the 20.Panzer-Division, and six Jagdpanthers to the 8.Panzer-Division.

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