U-boat Front Clasp in Silver
U-Boots - Frontspange in Silber
The U-boat front clasp (or combat clasp, as it is better known) was established by the Kriegsmarine on 15 May 1944, in bronze. This was done to equate with the means of recognition already enacted by the other services. This award recognized close combat and acknowledged courageous service.
The award was recommended by the U-boat commander based on one of three criteria: the number of sorties against the enemy, or the risk factor relative to the sortie number, or personal bravery. The award was made after approval by Grand Admiral Dönitz.
On 24 November 1944, a silver grade was introduced to recognize further valor. The exact criteria for this grade of the award is uncertain. The award document had a facsimile of the badge at the top with the commander's signature and stamp at the bottom. Christopher Ailsby reports that some gold versions were produced, but none awarded.
Decorations ordered by date
See this list sorted by last name
|Commander and rank||Age||Crew||Date||U-boat Command(s) held *|
|2.||Oblt.||Bensel, Rolf Rüdiger||21||40||1945||U-120|
|3.||Kptlt.||Brasack, Paul||28||37a||24 Mar 1945||U-737|
|4.||Oblt.||Mangold, Ernst||27||XII/39||6 Apr 1945||U-739|
|5.||Kptlt.||Eickstedt, Wolfgang von||29||35||20 Apr 1945||U-668|
5 U-boat Commanders decorated with U-boat Front Clasp in Silver (U-Boots - Frontspange in Silber) located.
+ Indicates the Officer died in the war.
* Commands held indicates the U-boat commands held by this officer before award date. In some cases the officer had not taken command his first boat yet or was not even in the U-boat force yet.
Note: This listing is still being compiled and some recipients might be missing.