Wehrpass and citation grouping to Leutnant Willy Graf. Joining the military in April 1933, Graf remained a professional soldier in the Wehrmacht for more than twelve years. He was a schooled mechanic, serving as Schirrmeister in a Potsdam based Nachrichten-Abteilung before the war. The extensive training pages 20-21 in the Wehrpass also mention courses followed with Mercedes-Benz in Berlin (1935), with Adler in Frankfurt am Main (1937), and with the Versuchs-Abteilung of the Panzertruppenschule Wünsdorf in 1938. His war started with the 3. leichte Division in the Polish campaign of September 1939. Other assignments included the Panzer-Werkstatt-Kompanie of the Gruppe Guderian in the Western campaign of 1940, and the Korps-Nachschubtruppen 420 of the 20. Armeekorps on the Eastern Front.
In 1944, Graf was moved back to the Heimat to follow an officer course in Stuttgart-Vaihingen, leading to his promotion from Oberschirrmeister to Leutnant in August 1944. He was then moved to a front line unit early October 1944: the II. Abteilung of Volks-Artillerie-Korps (mot.) 406. This artillery unit was newly formed in preparation of the Ardennes offensive, and partly equipped with Russian guns. As a "Volks-Verband", it was placed under command of the Reichsführer SS, and pushed for Bastogne in the opening days of the Battle of the Bulge: first as part of the 80. Armeekorps, then with the 85. Armeekorps from December 23rd to December 31st, 1945. In this time frame, its headquarters are reported in the Lutremange area south of Bastogne, on the Belgian-Luxembourg border. Graf survived the Ardennes and followed the V.A.K.406 to the Eastern Front, where it was first deployed with the 39. Panzer-Korps, mid February 1945. Early April 1945, it held positions in Neuhardenburg, opposite Küstrin on the Oder river. From there, Graf retreated with his unit and the remainders of the 101. Armeekorps to Berlin, where he was wounded during the final days of bitter fighting on April 30th, 1945. He was lucky to be transported west following this shrapnel wound in the upper right arm, and was captured by the British on May 4th, 1945. Willy Graf was awarded the Verwundetenabzeichen in Schwarz for his Berlin wound, this was added to four earlier awards: the Dienstauszeichnung IV. Klasse (1937), the Sudetenmedaille mit Spange (1941), the Kriegsverdienstkreuz 2. Klasse mit Schwertern (1941), and the Ostmedaille (1942).
The grouping consists of:
- Wehrpass, first issue from April 1938 in very good and complete condition. Notice the portrait photo has not been stamped, but it is definitely Graf, as can be seen from the other photos in the grouping.
- Award document for the Dienstauszeichnung 4. Klasse, Berlin 1937.
- Award document for the Medaille zur Erinnerung an den 1. Oktober 1938 mit Spange, Berlin 1940.
- Award document for the KVKII, a nice version produced by the XX. Armeekorps in 1941. Notice that Graf was awarded the first KVK2 of his unit!
- Award document for the Verwundetenabzeichen in Schwarz, signed by his Abteilungskommandeur for his Berlin wound in 1945.
- Militär-Führerschein issued by the Nachrichten-Abteilung Potsdam, 1934, with removed portrait photo.
- Militär-Fahrlehrerschein by the Nachrichten-Abteilung 43 in Potsdam, 1935, later extended by the "Übernahmestab Litzmannstadt" in Poland, 1942.
- Verpflichtungsschein in which Graf signed for twelve years of military service, 1933.
- POW Discharge document, 1945.
- Declaration of Aryan descent by his wife.
- Four more documents including vaccination of his son (born 1943), and Willi's postwar driving license.
- Thee private wartime photos of Graf: one in a Horch Kübelwagen, one showing off his skills on a BMW Krad (a typical activity for driving instructors), and one celebrating Christmas 1941 in the East.
Berlin WIA officer Wehrpass grouping, Ardennes
- Product Code: DX021