Crüwell, Ludwig, born 20-03-1892 in Dortmund, was a German General known for his involvement with the Afrika Korps . He was also a recipient of the Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves. The Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross and its higher grade Oak Leaves was awarded to recognize extreme battlefield bravery or successful military leadership. Legally it was Germany’s highest military decoration at the time of its presentation to Ludwig Crüwell. Crüwell was the commander of the 11th Panzer Division , the 11th Panzer Division was a Panzer division which saw action on the Eastern and Western Fronts. The formation’s emblem was a ghost (this must not be confused with the famed Gespenster outfit, which was the 7th Panzer Division) . The 11th did not take part in the western campaign, or see any action before Serbia. Crüwell was captured by the British on 29-05-1942, after his plane was forced to land. Crüwell and General der Panzertruppe, commander 3rd Panzer Division, Panzer-Lehr-Division, Fritz Bayerlein became commander of a the Afrika Korps on 31-07-1941, answering to Generalfeldmarschall der Panzertruppe, Afrika Korps, Erwin Rommel, who on the same day took command of Panzer Army Africa, consisting of one infantry and two Panzer divisions. On 29-05-1942, Crüwell was inspecting operations by air in Libya. His Fieseler Fi 156 pilot mistook British troops for Italian soldiers and landed. Although the pilot was fatally wounded, Crüwell survived and was taken prisoner.
Death and burial ground of Crüwell, Ludwig.
General Crüwell remained a prisoner and on 22-03-1943, was intentionally placed with another POW, General der Panzertruppe in the German Africa Corps. DAK, Wilhelm Ritter von Thoma, who during the meeting disclosed intelligence regarding the V-2 rocket
and used for RAF Operation Hydra bombing raids on Peenemünde, i.e.; surprise that London was not yet in ruins from German rockets being tested at a ‘special ground near Kummersdorf he had visited. During the desert war in Africa from 13-09-1940 until Mai 1943, the allied forces lost more then 250.000 men, death, wounded and captured. The As force’s casualties were 620.000 men included 250.000 prisoners of war. Ludwig Crüwell died age 66 in Essen and is buried with his parents, father Louis and mother Mathilde, on the Ostfriedhof of Dortmund in the Crüwell family grave.