Wilhelm Schöning

Wilhelm Schöning

Wilhelm Schöning
Born 8 June 1908
Gumbinnen, Germany
Died 2 November 1987 (aged 79)
Bochum, Germany
Allegiance Weimar Republic (to 1933)
Nazi Germany
Years of service ?–1945
Rank Oberstleutnant der Reserves
Commands held Panzergrenadier-Regiment 66
Battles/wars World War II
Awards Order of Michael the Brave
Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves

Wilhelm Schöning (June 8, 1908 – November 2, 1987) served as commander of the 66th Panzergrenadier Regiment of the 13th Panzer Division during the Siege of Budapest.


Most of the division was encircled and destroyed in Budapest between December and February 1944-45. The remnants which escaped, consisting of 200-300 men, were reformed under Schöning. Wounded during the battle by a hand grenade, Schöning managed to break through Soviet lines and reached the German 3rd Cavalry Brigade on the Buda side. Schöning remembered it thus:
Suddenly I had the feeling that my leg was being torn off. Division doctor Major Seeger, who was lying near me, wanted to help me. He bent over me and in so doing was himself wounded. Right at the start of the breakout he was shot in the leg which exposed his Achilles tendon and was then hit by another bullet which tore away his backside. As my pistol was empty I ordered my lieutenant to finish me off because I didn't want to be taken prisoner. He was himself wounded in the arm. He then called to me: “Only another 2,000 metres, Lieutenant Colonel. We have to make it!'” I crept through the snow up a hill with the major...Two wounded grenadiers from our battle group picked us up under the arms under the heaviest fire and stood us upright and I dragged myself with several wounds to the feet the two kilometres to the German position.[1]

Dates of Rank

Awards and decorations


  1. ^ "The Battle for Hungary" Krisztián Ungváry, Budapest Times, 10 December 2007

External links

  • Lexikon der Wehrmacht
  • Ritterkreuztraeger 1939-1945