NAME: Generalleutnant Eugen König

PW NO:          B22402

RANK:            Generalleutnant

CAPTURED:   Wuppertal, Germany

DATE:             18 April 1945


DATE OF BIRTH:     19 September 1896


DATE OF DEATH:    8 April 1985

PLACE OF DEATH:  Birburg/Eifel

NATIONALITY:       German

RELIGION:                Roman Catholic

OCCUPATION:        Regular Soldier

HEIGHT:                    6'1"

WEIGHT:                  164 lbs

HAIR COLOUR:       Dark Brown

EYE COLOUR:         Blue

NEXT OF KIN:         Katharina Koenig, (French Zone)


Commands & Assignments:

Decorations & Awards (included):

The 91st Air Landing Division in Normandy

Stationed on the Cotentin peninsula in Normandy, France, the 91st Air Landing Division served as a component of the LXXXIV Army Corps and faced the American D-Day landings on 6 June 1944.[4] In the early morning hours of D‑Day, paratroops of the U.S. 82nd Airborne Division ambushed and killed Generalleutnant Wilhelm Falley, the division commander, while he was driving back to his command post at Pont-l’Abbé from a cancelled war game at Rennes. Later that day, Oberst Bernhard Klosterkemper, the commander of Grenadier-Regiment 920 of the 243rd Infantry Division, assumed temporary leadership of the division pending Oberst König’s arrival four days later.

With the drop of the U.S. 82nd and 101st Airborne Divisions into its quartering and assembly areas, the 91st Air Landing Division could not mount an effective counterattack in the direction of Ste-Mère-Église. Suffering about 3,000 casualties by D+4 and plagued by a shortage of artillery ammunition, König’s division, augmented by Oberst Klosterkemper’s regiment, had difficulty covering its broad front and was reduced to a purely defensive role holding the line Carentan—Le Ham.

While serving under Battle Group “Hellmich,” the 91st Air Landing Division was fragmented and rendered combat ineffective when the U.S. VII Corps cut the Cotentin peninsula in half (isolating the port of Cherbourg) on the night of 17 June 1944.[5] Along with other battered and under strength units, those elements of the 91st Air Landing Division that avoided being cut off later served under Group “König.” On 10 August 1944, the 91st Air Landing Division was formally dissolved while König’s division staff oversaw the building of defensive positions. Luftwaffe Oberstleutnant Dr. jur. Dr. rer. pol. Friedrich-August Freiherr von der Heydte, the commander of the 6th Fallschirmjäger-Regiment, later described the fate of the division (his regiment operated alongside the 91st Air Landing Division early in the Normandy campaign): 

The division was decimated during the first three days of the invasion; its remnants were for the time being attached to other divisions or withdrawn. The division staff was employed as a special assignments staff for the purpose of reconnoitering and preparing defensive positions behind the invasion front.

General der Panzertruppe Leo Freiherr Geyr von Schweppenburg, the Commander-in-Chief of Panzer Group West, later commended König’s performance as commander of the 91st Air Landing Division in Normandy: “The newly organized division, which had not yet been fully trained and equipped, performed well owing to the energetic leadership of Generalmajor König.”


[1] On 13 December 1941, Generalleutnant Maximilian Siry assumed command of the 246th Infantry Division. The former commander, Generalleutnant Erich Denecke, was later held as prisoner of war at Island Farm Special Camp 11 until his release in October 1947.

[2] General der Infanterie Gustav-Adolf von Zangen commanded the 15th Army from 25 August 1944 until his capture in the Ruhr pocket on 17 April 1945. SS-Oberst-Gruppenführer und Panzer Generaloberst der Waffen-SS Josef “Sepp” Dietrich commanded the 6th (SS) Panzer Army from 14 September 1944-8 May 1945.

[3] General der Panzertruppe Hasso von Manteuffel commanded the 5th Panzer Army from 10 September 1944-9 March 1945. After being succeeded by Generaloberst Josef Harpe, he transferred to the Eastern Front where he took command of the 3rd Panzer Army. Among other prisoner of war camps, General der Panzertruppe von Manteuffel was held at Island Farm Special Camp 11 after the war.

[4] The one-legged General der Artillerie Erich Marcks served as the Commanding General of the LXXXIV Army Corps in Normandy. He was killed in action on 12 June 1944 when an Allied fighter-bomber attacked his staff car near St. Lô.

[5] Generalleutnant Heinz Hellmich commanded the 243rd Infantry Division in Normandy and was the senior German officer of the Cotentin garrison. On 17 June 1944, he was killed in action near Canville by an Allied air attack. Two days earlier, the German forces in the Cotentin peninsula were organized into two battle groups: Battle Group “Hellmich” (77th Infantry Division and 91st Air Landing Division) and Battle Group “Schlieben” (243rd and 709th Infantry Divisions). Generalleutnant Karl-Wilhelm von Schlieben commanded the 709th Infantry Division in Normandy. On 23 June 1944, he was also named Commandant of Fortress Cherbourg and surrendered to U.S. forces three days later. Generalleutnant von Schlieben was later held as prisoner of war at Island Farm Special Camp 11 until his release in October 1947.