00.00.00-00.00.00 Schützen-Regiment 2
00.00.00-00.00.00 Schützen Regiment 304
00.00.00-00.00.00 2.(Panzerspäh) Kompanie Panzer Division Hermann Göring
00.00.00-00.00.00 2. Kradschützen-Kompanie Panzer Division Hermann Göring
00.00.00-00.00.00 Panzer-Aufklärungs-und-Ersatz-Ausbildungs-Abteilung 7
00.00.00-00.00.00 Panzer-Aufklärungs-Abteilung 9 (9. Panzer Div.)
00.00.36 Schützen Abzeichen des Deutsches Heeres (Shooting Lanyard for Machine Gunners)
00.00.38 Dienstauszeichnung IV. Klasse (Long Service Award 4th Class)
00.00.39 Medaille Zur Erinnerung An Den 13. März 1938 (Commemerative Medal of 13.03.38)
00.00.39 Medaille Zur Erinnerung An Den 1. Oktober 1938 mit Spange (Commemerative Medal of 1.10.38 with Prague clasp)
10.09.40 Eiserne Kreuz 2. Klasse (Iron Cross 2nd Class)
00.08.42 Medaille "Winterschlacht Im Osten 1941/42" (Winter War Medal 1941/42)
02.03.45 Verwundeten-Abzeichen in Schwartz (Wound Badge in Black)
10 September 40
Eiserne Kreuz 2. Klasse (Iron Cross 2nd Class)
Medaille "Winterschlacht Im Osten 1941/42" (Winter War Medal 1941/42)
Diening is assigned to the 2. Kompanie of Panzer-Aufklärungs-Abteilung of Panzer Division "Hermann Göring," which was formed in May 1943 in Santa Maria, Italy.
Hand colored portrait of Diening wearing his black Panzer Spiess
while serving with the Hermann Göring Division. ca. Aug. 43
10 September 43
Diening is assigned to the 2. Kradschützen-Kompanie of Panzer Division "Hermann Göring," and less than two weeks later, he suffered a knee injury. He was then transferred to the Luftwaffen-Lazarett in Amsterdam. During his service with Panzer Division "Hermann Göring," he saw heavy fighting in Sicily and Italy.
9 January 44
Diening is assigned to the Stammkompanie (Cadre Company) of Schützen Regiment 2 at which time an "older" photo of him was attached to the inside cover of the Soldbuch. It shows him wearing his black "Hermann Göring" wraparound tunic and presumably after the war he cut off the lower portion of the photo. This may have been done by Diening so that when he used his Soldbuch as a post-war identification his black uniform with Totenkopf (Death's Head) collar tabs would not confuse him as being a member of the SS.
1 September 44
After recuperting from his injury, Diening attends the Schule für Fahnenjunker der Panzertruppe (Officer Candidate School for Panzer Troops), Fhj. Lehrgang 3, Lehrgruppe II / 7.Inspektor. He was subsequently assigned to Panzer-Aufklärungs-und-Ersatz-Ausbildungs-Abteilung 7 in München.
20 October 44
Diening is commissioned as a Leutnant with seniority from 1 September 1944.
28 November 44
On or around this date Diening joins the 9. Panzer Division with his Soldbuch indicating he was issued clothing and equipment in the field.
Late December 44 to early January 45
During his service with the 9. Panzer Division Diening would have fought in the Ardennes Offensive, fighting from 25 December 1944 to 4 January 1945 in Rochefort and Houffalize. After retreating behind the West Wall, Panzer-Aufklärungs-Abteilung 9 was deployed in Brünn and in the Eifel, as well as north of this region.
The 9th Panzer Division was assigned to XLVII Panzer Corps again as part of the Fifth Panzer Army, Army Group B and was one of the units participating in the Battle of the Bulge. The Corps was part of the central attack route during the offensives, attacking the Ninth United States Army and pushing it back. The division initially advanced quickly, but once the tide of the campaign turned in the allies' favor, the division took extreme losses once again as Adolf Hitler refused to allow the German forces in the campaign to retreat in a timely manner. It was eventually pulled back to the German lines.
early January/ February 45
The division once again engaged the Allied in fighting around the Eifel mountain range. It also participated in fighting around the Erft River in February, where its armored force was reduced to 29 tanks and 16 assault guns. Late in the month, it launched an attack on the allied Remagen Bridgehead over the Rhine River. The attack was a good showing for the German force, which fought tenaciously, but unsuccessfully to push to the Remagen Bridge. By the end of this fight, the division consisted of only 600 men and 15 tanks.
2 March 45
Diening is wounded and transferred to Standortlazarett Wuppertal, a military hospital located in Wuppertal, Germany.
6 March 45
The 9th Panzer Division's final combat assignment came in a battle near Cologne, as a part of the battered LXXXI Corps, alongside the 363rd Volksgrenadier Division and the 3rd Panzergrenadier Division which were in equally poor shape, and the entire corps was barely the strength of one division. Facing them was the US 3rd Armored Division. The division attempted to defend the town from attack, but was unable to make progress against American forces.
7 March 45
After its unsuccessful attack, the shattered 9th Panzer Division was counterattacked by strong Allied forces. Panzer-Aufklärungs-Abteilung 9, Diening's unit, is decimated in the area of Köln-Nord - Worringen. For Diening his wound from 2 March would allow him to escape the fate of his comrades and thus survive the war.
The 9th Panzer Division engaged the Americans in the city center of Cologne, but were quickly pushed back, and the divisional commander was killed. Remnants of the division attempted to flee across the Rhine River. In the fighting that followed, the weak formation finally collapsed. Most of the remains of the division were forced into the Ruhr Pocket, continuing to suffer staggering losses while holding lines on the south flank of Army Group B until they surrendered to American forces in April 1945. By this time, the demoralized soldiers of the division were entirely out of ammunition and gasoline, and remaining troops surrendering without a fight. The division continued to exist briefly afterward; Major Halle, the division's adjutant, escaped the Ruhr encirclement with a small battle group, and joined the 11th Army in the Harz Mountains.
26 April 45
It was in the Harz Mountains that German commanders of Oberbefehlschaber West disbanded the 9th Panzer Division, absorbing its survivors into other units.
6 July 45
Leutnant Helmut Diening document group
The pre-war album contains mostly photos from his training period with Schützen-Regiment 2 in Meiningen, with which he served as an Oberfeldwebel (First Sergeant, or Spiess).