Adolf Heinle

Adolf Heinle was born on 8 August 1924 in Augsburg, Germany.
He lived together with his mother and foster father.

In Oktober 1942 at the age of 18 Adolf was concripted into the German army. Adolf was send to the Artillerie branch and started his basic training at Artillerie-Ersatz-Abteilung 179 in France. After his basic training Adolf was send to a combat unit. This was the staff of IV. Abteilung of Artillerie-Regiment 333. This Artillery unit was part of the 333. Infanterie-Division.

This Division was engaged on the Southern part of the easternfront in Russia. During 1943 it fought at the area of Donez/Isjum. In September 1943 Adolf got ill. He was infected with malaria and hospitalized for at least a month. This was to be luck as the Division got destroyed in Oktober 1943.
The remains of the Division were assigned to other combat units.

Around the same time the German high command ordered that a new type of anti-tank, "Panzerzerstörer", unit was to be made. These units acted as independed units under an army Corps. They were to support units on the frontline in an anti-tank manner but were not to be used in any Infantry form whatsoever. Adolf was send to one of those. He was put in the newly created Panzerzerstörer-Kompanie 484. This Company sized unit had about 150 men and, next to standard Infantry weapons, was equipt with about 54 Panzerschreck's (bazooka's) and had 10 in reserve.

The maximum distance of the panzerschreck, for the the rocket to be effective, was 150 meters. So a soldier had to get within 150 meters of a tank to be able to destroy it. Which was pretty dangerous! You need men with steel nerves for this. The Kompanie was divided in 3 platoons. Each platoon had 3 groups with each 6 Panzerschrecks and 60 rockets for them. The Kompanie also had 12 horse drawn IF8 karren (Infantry carts) and 9 IF8 trailers. These were to carry the Panzerschrecks and rocket ammunition. The Kompanieführer (company leader) had a Volkswagen Kubel and there was a horse drawn fieldkitchen.

3 photo's of an unknown Panzerzerstörer unit at the Southern part of the easternfront, early 1944. Perhaps Adolf Heinle's unit?

Adolf was put in the 9th group of the 3rd platoon. As young boy his first function was to oversee the horses of his group. How long Adolf kept this function is unknown to me. It would later change!
Adolf's Kompanie fought on the eastern front in the Southern part. At which exact area's is unknown for me. On 26 January 1944 the Kompanie did a mandatory security check and wrote this down on page 15 of the Soldbuch. On 20 February 1944 Adolf was promoted to Gefreiter (private first class). On 15 June 1944 Adolf's Kompanie did another security check, which they wrote on page 14.

Around August 1944 Adolf's Kompanie was attached to the 371. Infanterie-Division. This Division was fighting near the Weichsel river near Baranow. On 25 August 1944 the Russians made a strong attack against the Division at Glowaczowa. On this day Adolf was awarded the Iron-Cross II Class by the 371. Infanterie-Division. Adolf probably fought in or near that town. Perhaps he assisted in destroying enemy tank(s)! On 1 September 1944 the Kompanie did yet again a mandatory security check. They wrote this down on page 14 of the Soldbuch.

In late September 1944 Adolf became sick again. At Kriegslazarett (mot) 1/591 it was diagnosed that he had a contagious disease. About 2 weeks later Adolf was send to 2/Kranken-Transport-Abteilung (mot) 790. On 2 December 1944 Adolf was deemed fit and send back to Panzerzerstörer-Kompanie 484 at the front. On the 27th of December Adolf gave back his rifle and received a Walther P.38 pistol. On the 1st of January 1945 Adolf was promoted to Obergefreiter (Corporal).

On 12 January 1945 the Russians started a big offensive in the area of Baranów. Heavy fighting ensued. In late January 1945 Adolf was wounded by shrapnell. This probably happend on the 24th as he gave back his pistol on that day. Adolf was hospitalized and arrived at Reserve-Lazarett Prag on the 28th.

The Russian offensive in 1945. The 371. Infanterie-Division can be seen in blue on the top-right part of the map.

On 7 February 1945 Adolf was given the Woundbadge in black for his combat wound by the hospital. On 1 March 1945 Adolf was promoted to Unteroffizier (sergeant) which they wrote down on page 1 and 3 but they forgot to update page 18 as well. On 3 March 1945 the hospital wrote down the Iron-Cross I Class that Adolf had earned earlier, unknown what date. But it was awarded by the 371.Infanterie-Division. This would indicate that Adolf's Kompanie was still (or again) attached to this Division. On 17 March 1945 the hospital wrote down another medal, this time the Panzervernichtungs-Abzeichen. It was awarded earlier by his own Kompanie for destroying a Russian tank. Perhaps this happend on the same day he got wounded and earned the Iron-Cross I Class? Adolf was released from the hospital on 25 March 1945 and send to his Ersatz (replacement/convalesce) unit; Infanterie-Panzerjäger-Ersatz-Kompanie 467 based in München. This Ersatz unit was part of Division Nr.467.

Somehow Adolf was engaged in combat again, most likely in or around München. Adolf was hit by bullet(s) in early May 1945 and hospitalized. He arrived at a Reserve-Lazarett Bad-Aibling (Aprox. 50 km. Southeast of München) on 5 May 1945. On the 25th of June 1945 Adolf was released from the hospital and send to a POW release-camp. The war had ended but Adolf Heinle had surived!