Tiger 131 of Schwere SS Panzer Abteilung 101

Panzerkampfwagen VI ausf E Tiger I (SdKfz 181) Trumnummer (Turret Number) 131 of Schwere SS Panzer Abteilung 101, 1.Kompanie, 3.Zug (Platoon) 1st vehicle, commanded by SS-Untersturmfuhrer (Second Lieutenant) Walther Hahn (June 9, 1913 - ????) who is seated in the commander's cupola as the tank passes the Church in Morgny. Note the Type 166 Schwimmwagen at the extreme right. Hahn was a reserve SS officer assigned to the German government who volunteered for combat service. He was assigned to the 9th SS Infantry Regiment and then the 2nd SS Division "Das Reich" before transferring to Schwere SS Panzer Abteilung 101 July 30, 1943. Nicknamed "Papa" Hahn for his age (thirty-one) he did not seek to become a tank ace, but was respected by his men for leading his platoon in battle. He won the Iron Cross Second Class in November 1943. Attached to 1st SS Division "Liebstandarte Adolf Hitler," Schwere SS Panzer Abteilung 101 had thirty-seven Tiger Is operational and eight under repair. After a difficult road march marked by breakdowns and air attack, the Battalion moves from Beauvais on June 7, 1944 to Normandy near Caen on June 12. the next day, elements of 2.Kompanie stop the British advance on Caen in the Battle of Villers-Bocage. By July 3, 1.Kompanie had three Tigers left, and turned them over to 3.Kompanie and left for Paderborn to reequip with Tiger IIs. Hahn was with the Battalion, now redesignated Schwere SS Panzer Abteilung 501, during the Ardennes Campaign. Date estimated.
Caption Written By: 
Jason McDonald
Date Photographed: 
Thursday, June 8, 1944