Germany - Third Reich: A very fine and scarce Entry into the Sudetenland 1938, Fall of France Iron Cross 2nd Class and Russian Front Army Group Centre junior ranking soldier’s Iron Cross 1st Class group of award documents to Oberschütze later demoted to Schütze / Gefreiter Helmut Rickers, 3rd Company, 76th Motorised Infantry Regiment, 20th Infantry Division, for the Sudetenland and Fall of France, and then 11th Company, 119th Motorised Infantry Regiment, 25th Infantry Division out on the Russian Front. Awarded the Iron Cross 2nd Class at Matagn

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Product ID: CMA/27987
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Germany - Third Reich: A very fine and scarce Entry into the Sudetenland 1938, Fall of France Iron Cross 2nd Class and Russian Front Army Group Centre junior ranking soldier’s Iron Cross 1st Class group of award documents to Oberschütze later demoted to Schütze / Gefreiter Helmut Rickers, 3rd Company, 76th Motorised Infantry Regiment, 20th Infantry Division, for the Sudetenland and Fall of France, and then 11th Company, 119th Motorised Infantry Regiment, 25th Infantry Division out on the Russian Front. Awarded the Iron Cross 2nd Class at Matagne la Porte on 7th June 1940, he was then demoted, and having transferred regiments, saw service out on the Russian Front as part of the 25th Infantry Division in Army Group Centre, being awarded the Infantry Assault Badge in Bronze in April 1942, this being a very scarce award document, he went on to be awarded the Iron Cross 1st Class on 16th August 1942 when his regiment was operating around Bryansk and Orel, an usual award for one of such a low rank.

Comprising in order of award:

1) Medal for the Entry into the Sudetenland 1938 Award Certificate, issued to: ‘Oberschütze Helmuth Rickers, 3.Kompanie Infanterie-Regiment 76’, dated 29th November 1939, signed in ink ‘Gollnick’ for Hans Gollnick, as Oberst and CO, later Generalleutnant and recipient of the Knight’s Cross on 21st November 1942 and the Oakleaves to the Knights Cross on 24th August 1943.

2) Iron Cross 2nd Class Award Certificate, issued to: ‘Oberschützen Helmut Rickers, Infanterie-Regiment 76’, issued at Matagne la Porte on 7th June 1940, signed in ink ‘Wiktorin’ for Mauritz von Wiktorin, Generalleutnant and GOC 20th Infantry Division, recipient of the Knight’s Cross on 15th August 1940.

3) Infantry Assault Badge in Bronze Award Certificate, issued to: ’Schützen Helmut Rickers, 11./J.R.(mot)119’, dated 20th April 1942, sided in ink ‘Bräuchle’ as Oberst and CO, recipient of the German Cross in Gold on 2nd October 1942.

4) Iron Cross 1st Class Award Certificate, issued to: ‘Gefreiten Helmut Rickers, 11./J.R.(mot)119’, dated 16th August 1942, signed in ink ‘von Oven’ for Karl von Oven, Generalleutnant and GOC of the 56th Infantry Division, recipient of the Knight’s Cross on 9th January 1942.

Helmut Rickers was a pre-war solider who saw service as an Oberschütze with the 3rd Company, 76th Motorised Infantry Regiment, 20th Infantry Division, during the annexation of the Sudetenland in Czechoslovakia in 1938, and was awarded the medal for this on 29th November 1939.

With the outbreak of the Second World War, he would have seen service during the campaign in Poland in 1939, and in France in 1940, and was awarded the Iron Cross 2nd Class for France when at Matagne la Porte on 7th June 1940.

Rickers then appears to have been at some stage demoted to Schütze / later Gefreiter, and having transferred, then seen service with the 11th Company, 119th Motorised Infantry Regiment, 25th Infantry Division out on the Russian Front, and seen service with Army Group Centre. Awarded the Infantry Assault Badge in Bronze on 20th April 1942, in the junior rank of Gefreiter, he was for this rank awarded a relatively scarce award of the Iron Cross 1st Class on 16th August 1942 when his regiment was operating around Bryansk and Orel.