Felix Prentki, a civilian musician aged 31, enlisted into the Wehrmacht on June 29th 1943 in Bromberg. He would report to Stamm.Kp.Gren.Ers.Btl.(mot) 60 and was moved to 4th Kompanie of the Gren.Ausb.Btl. 156 (provided replacements for the 16th Infantry Division) which at the time was stationed at the sea of Azov for troop refreshment after fighting a series of defensive battles in the Mariopol-Stalino area. June 1943 would see the division become the 16th Panzergrenadier Division, part of the newly formed 6th Army after the formers encirclement in Stalingrad. Felix presumably saw his first action in the areas of Mius, Zaporozhye, and Krivoi Rog.
1943 would come and pass without Felix winning any awards or being injured, but 1944 would see a change of scenery. On January 19th Felix was for some unknown reason transferred again (as noted on the unit supplies page) and by February 29th found himself in Nebel.Ers. Rgt.2. On March 13th Felix was issued a pistol and rifle and from March 23-30th he was approved by his Oberleutn.u.Battr.Chef for leave. At some point in May Felix was issued supplies by Werr.Rgt. 84 which was stationed at one of three potential locations. Due to conflicting reports and information, Werfer. Rgt. 84 could have been at Omaha Beach, multiple beaches, or in Reserve. Despite the uncertainty in his exact location, Felix would have been witness to the Normandy landings in some capacity as he would be promoted to Gefreiter on July 1st while serving in the 6th battery of Werfer.Rgt. 84.
Captured or KIA
Felix’s last Soldbuch entry would be July 7th, denoting a pay upgrade by the Oberzahlmeister. It was after this last entry that Felix was presumably captured as he cannot be found on the Volksbund. Another unit stamp appears in Felix’s soldbuch but I have been thus far unable to figure out where it fits into the picture Werfer.Ers.u.Ausb.Abt. 5 or 6?. Despite only serving just over a year in the Wehrmacht Felix certainly saw an interesting mix of uncommon units and iconic combat.
Werfer Brigade 7 was established in Munsterlager in March of 1944. Made up of both Werfer-Regiment 83 and 84, it was moved to Beauvais France in May under the command of Panzergruppe West. On June 16th the brigade was used to support an attack on the British bridgehead at Orne. It would then see action again in early July as part of the 12th SS Panzer Division until it’s eventual destruction in Normandy.
As stated earlier, there are reports from multiple sectors of the D-Day landings (particularly an intelligence report from Omaha & Utah ) that states “Rockets were located several hundred yards behind both beaches [i.e. Omaha & Utah] in hedgerows. They occurred in groups of 38 firing pits with 4 rockets to a pit.”. Further research shows photographic proof of these emplacments at Saint-Laurent (WN 69) which were likely Wurfgerät (wood racks) constructed by Werfer-Regiments and manned by contingents from Werfer Bridgade 7.