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1941/42 Luftwaffe Paratrooper Commendation for bravery on the Russian Front

Article about: Hi Guys, I'm a newbie hoping to get information on an item. I have what I believe to be a Luftwaffe paratrooper Commendation for the winter campaign of 1941/42 on the Russian Front. Loosely

  1. #1

    Default 1941/42 Luftwaffe Paratrooper Commendation for bravery on the Russian Front

    Hi Guys,

    I'm a newbie hoping to get information on an item.
    I have what I believe to be a Luftwaffe paratrooper Commendation for the winter campaign of 1941/42 on the Russian Front. Loosely translated reads:
    "A hero for Fuhrer, Folk and Realm suffered in Russia
    Corporal Helmut Kirsten
    in the Company "Winter Storm"

    It measures about 8" x 10 1/2". As the picture shows it has terrific coloring with the Luftwaffe symbol in blue, with a yellow paratrooper eagle below that and then the soldier's name actually hand painted in gold. Signed on the bottom by his commander Lieutenant Colonel Walter Koch. (later allegedly killed on Hitler's orders).

    Any info would be appreciated.

    Thanks

    Bill
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  3. #2

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    Welcome on the forum!!!! I can't help you with this but others will do soon enough! If your items turn out to be an original then you have a very nice piece of paper there!!!

  4. #3

    Default

    I have seen these before,this one looks ok to me.

  5. #4
    MAP
    MAP is offline
    ?

    Default

    Paper is tough. I think the guys will need a lot clearer pictures to authenticate. close ups of the edges, back, writing, signature, etc.

    welcome to the forum.

    Michael
    "Please", Thank You" and proper manners appreciated

    My greatest fear is that one day I will die and my wife will sell my guns for what I told her I paid for them

    "Don't tell me these are investments if you never intend to sell anything" (Quote: Wife)

  6. #5

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    Thanks guys so glad you could give me info. I went to an auction where they had some WWII lots from a veteran. The other people were there mostly for jewelry etc. and I swooped in and got the military stuff including this and a luftwaffe proxy wedding helmet.
    Anyways, I have included some close-up pics as you said they were needed to properly determine its authenticity. (the flash makes the paper appear white on some pics)

    Including the signature, stamp, hand-painted gold name and rank and the rear which is blank.

    Don't know how well you will be able to see the pictures but I can tell you that the signature looks like a live one. You can see, for example, in the first stroke up the darkening of the lines as the meet as he comes down. The rank and name are certainly hand painted. Also on the back some of the lettering has left the slightest raised "imprint" almost as if the wording were kinda stamped on.

    Thanks for any info. But I have to ask. If genuine this seems like an extraordinary piece considering the graphics, the rarity and the fame (to history buffs anyways) of the signer. What would you think its value to be.

    Thanks again,

    Bill
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  7. #6
    MAP
    MAP is offline
    ?

    Default

    I'm not a "paper" guy so I won't be of much help but from what I can see it looks pretty convincing. I'm sure someone with expertise will be around to give you a thumbs up or down.

    Now, ya gotta post that wedding helmet. Those are pretty neat and there are some guys here who love those. Here is a recent thread with comments/feedback from some of the best in this hobby.

    Wedding DD Heer helmet unit mark

    Good luck!

    Michael
    "Please", Thank You" and proper manners appreciated

    My greatest fear is that one day I will die and my wife will sell my guns for what I told her I paid for them

    "Don't tell me these are investments if you never intend to sell anything" (Quote: Wife)

  8. #7

    Default

    Here 'ya go.
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture Click image for larger version. 

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  9. #8
    MAP
    MAP is offline
    ?

    Default

    A nice one! But put it in the same forum as with the other wedding helmet. Will receive the attention from the Helmet Collectors.
    "Please", Thank You" and proper manners appreciated

    My greatest fear is that one day I will die and my wife will sell my guns for what I told her I paid for them

    "Don't tell me these are investments if you never intend to sell anything" (Quote: Wife)

  10. #9

    Default

    It's not a commendation. The text translates as:

    "In the winter defensive fighting of 1941/42,
    Obergefreiter
    Helmut Kirsten
    suffered a hero's death
    in Russia
    for the Führer, the people and the Reich.

    Sturmregiment

    [sealed and signed]

    Oberstleutnant and Regimental Commander
    "


    The online database of the Volksbund Deutsche Kriegsgräberfürsorge (the German War Graves Commission) lists seven men named Helmut Kirsten. The rank and timeframe of death given on the certificate match this man:


    Last name: Kirsten
    First names: Helmut Paul Wilhelm
    Rank: Obergefreiter
    Date of birth: 12 Feb. 1918
    Place of birth: Triptis
    Date of death: 17 Jan. 1942
    Place of death: Goroditsche


    Goroditsche is also a match as elements of Sturmregiment 1 were indeed operating in that area at the time; so it's a pretty safe bet that this is the man in question.

  11. #10

    Default

    Thanks. It's always nice to know about the soldier. Can you provide a link to the site.
    BTW It was interesting learning about Lieutenant Colonel Koch who signed the document and how he criticized Hitler's orders to kill commandos and soon died under mysterious circumstances shortly after the criticism.

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