SS-Hauptsturmf�hrer Heinrich Schmelzer

Born: March 14th, 1914 in Nesselroden
Died: April 4th, 1985
Iron Cross 2nd Class: July 1st, 1940
Iron Cross 1st Class: July 27th, 1940
German Cross in Gold: October 27th, 1942
Knights Cross: March 12th, 1944
Oakleaves: February 28th, 1945 (756th)

Heinrich Schmelzer was the most decorated soldier of the Pionier Bataillon. He joined the SS-Pioniersturmbann in June, 1935 and in September 1939 was a Gruppenführer in 3.Kompanie. Later, as an SS-Oberscharführer he was the II.Halbzugführer (half platoon leader) in 3. Kompanie during April 1941. He movede to the Kradschützen Bataillon as Pioniererkundungzugf&uum;hrer (engineer reconnaissance platoon leader) from May to August 1941. He later returned to the Pionier Bataillon as II.Zugführer in 3.Kompanie after a field promotion. In December 1943 he was given command of the mixed Pionier Kompanie of Kampfgruppe "Das Reich" which he led until the forming of 4.(schwere) Kompanie which he commanded until it was dissolved in August 1944. At that time he became 2.Kompanie Chef until Christmas 1944. He then moved to 3. Kompanie which he commanded until the end of the war. Schmelzer won the Oakleaves for his actions as sector commander of the"Das Reich" battlegroup near Cielle and Laroche, France on January 7th, 1945.

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