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Julius Ringel

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Julius Ringel

Julius Ringel
Julius Ringel
Nickname(s) Papa
Born 16 November 1889
Völkermarkt, Carinthia
Died 11 February 1967
Bayerisch Gmain, Bavaria
Allegiance Austria-Hungary, Austria, Nazi Germany
Service/branch Army
Years of service 1905–1945
Rank General der Gebirgstruppe
Commands held 3. Gebirgs-Division, 5. Gebirgs-Division, LXIX Armeekorps, Wehrkreis XI, Korps Ringel
Awards Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves

Julius Alfred "Papa" Ringel (16 November 1889 – 11 February 1967) was an Austrian-born German General of Mountain Troops (General der Gebirgstruppen). He commanded the 3. Gebirgs-Division, 5. Gebirgs-Division, LXIX Armeekorps, Wehrkreis XI and the Korps Ringel. He was also a recipient of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves.

Early career

Julius Ringel was born in Völkermarkt in the Austrian state of Carinthia. In 1905 he was admitted to a military school in Vienna, graduating on 18 August 1909. Following his education Fähnrich Ringel was assigned to the k.u.k. Landwehr Infanterie-Regiment 4 (a mountain infantry unit) and a year later, he was promoted to Leutnant. At the outbreak of World War I, Ringel served with Gebirgs-Schützen-Regiment 2 participating in the operations in Galicia and the Italian Alps where he was taken a prisoner of war in 1918. Upon his return to the newly formed Republic of German Austria, Ringel fought against the troops of the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes occupying his native Carinthia. Following the Carinthian Plebiscite and the creation of the First Austrian Republic, Ringel was transferred to the Austrian Federal Army where he rose to the rank of Major in 1930 and became Lieutenant Colonel in 1932. Two years later he was assigned to the 5th Gebirgsjäger-Brigade.

Service in the Wehrmacht

As a supporter of the Nazi Party, Ringel strongly encouraged the union of Austria with the German Reich and after the Anschluss enthusiastically joined the Wehrmacht with the 3. Gebirgs-Division.[1] On 1 February 1939, Ringel was promoted to a full colonel and became the commander of the Infanterie-Regiments 74. When World War II began, he was then assigned to the 268. Infanterie-Division and on 27 October 1939 he took over as a commander of Infanterie-Regiments 266, which he led during the campaign in the West.

On 7 June 1940, Ringel returned to the 3. Gebirgs-Division, becoming its commander on 14 July 1940. He led the division until the end of October, when he was promoted to Major General and received a new assignment; as a commander of the newly established 5. Gebirgs-Division. The division saw its first action in the spring of 1941 in the Balkans Campaign, operations code name Marita and Merkur. Following the operations in Greece, the division distinguished itself on Crete, where it took part in the battles to secure the island from the British. For his outstanding leadership during these operations Ringel was awarded the prestigious Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross on 13 June 1941.

In November 1941, Ringel’s division was posted back to Germany for rest and refitting. However, only four months later it was sent back to action on the Eastern Front. Ringel commanded the 3. Gebirgs-Division through the operations southwest of Leningrad, where it played a major role in the defeat of the Volkhov Front; an achievement for which Julius Ringel was promoted to Lieutenant General and in October 1943 also received the Oak Leaves to his Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross. After nearly two years in Russia, Ringel was ordered to move his Division to Italy and in December 1943 it arrived on the Gustav Line near the town of Cassino. He stayed in Italy for another four months, before he received a new assignment and became a commander of the LXIX Armeekorps in Croatia. In June, Ringel was once again promoted, this time to full General of the mountain troops and put in charge of the Military District Salzburg (Wehrkreis XVIII (Salzburg)) from which the Korps Ringel were formed. He held this appointment until the war's end.

Summary of his military career

Dates of rank


Wehrmachtbericht reference

Date Original German Wehrmachtbericht wording Direct English translation
Wednesday, 11 June 1941 An der Durchführung der Operationen auf Kreta hatten der Kommandeur einer Gebirgsdivision, Generalmajor Ringel, sowie als Kommandeure von Gebirgsregimentern die Obersten Utz, Jais und Krakau und der Kommandeur eines Gebirgsartillerieregiments, Oberstleutnant Wittmann, mit den ihnen unterstellten Truppen entscheidenden Anteil.[6] In the execution of operations on Crete, the commander of a Mountain Division, General Major Ringel, and as commanders of mountain regiments, the Colonels Utz, Jais and Krakau and the commander of a mountain artillery regiment, Lieutenant Colonel Wittmann, along with their subordinate troops had a decisive share.


  1. ^ Thomas, Wegmann: Die Ritterkreuzträger der Gebirgstruppe, Band 2: L-Z
  2. ^ a b Thomas 1998, p. 211.
  3. ^ a b Scherzer 2007, p. 631.
  4. ^ Fellgiebel 2000, p. 359.
  5. ^ Fellgiebel 2000, p. 73.
  6. ^ Die Wehrmachtberichte 1939–1945 Band 1, p. 556.

Military offices
Preceded by
Generaloberst Eduard Dietl
Commander of 3. Gebirgs-Division
14 June 1940 – 23 October 1940
Succeeded by
General der Gebirgstruppen Hans Kreysing
Preceded by
Commander of 5. Gebirgs-Division
1 November 1940 – 10 February 1944
Succeeded by
Generalleutnant Max-Günther Schrank
Preceded by
General der Infanterie Ernst Dehner
Commander of LXIX Armeekorps
31 March 1944 – 24 June 1944
Succeeded by
General der Infanterie Helge Auleb
Preceded by
General der Artillerie Max Grimmeiß
Commander of Wehrkreis XVIII (Salzburg)
21 January 1945 – 8 May 1945
Succeeded by
dissolved on 8 May 1945
Preceded by
Commander of Korps Ringel
February 1945 – 8 May 1945
Succeeded by
dissolved on 8 May 1945
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