General Sommer: why the Germans gave the Soviet General way to Kaliningrad

History 10/02/20 General Sommer: why the Germans gave the Soviet General way to Kaliningrad

In 1897 (according to the book of Anatoly Petrykin “Names in the names of streets”) in the Poltava province in the family of Russified Germans, Jozef and Usefi Sommer was born a boy whose father named Florian. However, the proud name, which once was worn by the Roman Emperor, did not take root on Russian soil. At home of Floriana were called Andrew. The name later made its way into official documents.

In the war

the Dream of the father was that the son became a General. Not surprisingly, Andrew I. Sommer was recorded in the Poltava cadet corps, and upon its completion he entered the Kiev military school. However, managed to finish only there for a crash course in 1914 with the rank of warrant officer was sent to the front. Just over a year Sommer showed miracles of bravery and honored with three awards.

But in October 1915 he was seriously wounded and landed in German captivity. Initially, there he was in good standing — after all, the historic home of Andrew I. was Germany. But all entreaties to switch to the German side Sommer rejected at the first attempt tried to escape. Failed. The second attempt was also unsuccessful. Then the young ensign was sent to a camp in Germany, where he met the capitulation of the “Fatherland”.

Of cavalry in tankers

In 1918, Sommer returned to Ukraine and, caught in the maelstrom of tumultuous political changes that have chosen the Bolsheviks. In the ranks of the red Army during the Civil war, Andrew had to fight with Denikin, and Makhno, and the Basmachi, and the Caucasian gangsters.

In the military Sommer was one of the best, and therefore even voluntary exit from the party (because of the rejection of the policies of the NEP) was not an obstacle to progress up the career ladder. The commander of a cavalry battalion, he entered the Military AcademyYu named after M. V. Frunze, and after graduating went in Primorye chief of staff of armored forces.

From prison to front

But, like many commanders, who made career in the late 30s, the City was unable to avoid purges: arrest, charged with espionage and death sentences, later commuted to 15 years in prison. Really did of them a former chief of staff of only 2 — after the removal of Yezhov, his case was revised, and the military rehabilitated and restored to service.

However, until 1943 Colonel Sommer remained in the rear and is mainly engaged in teaching activities. To put an ethnic German staff-officer in the army feared. And it is in vain, as subsequent events showed.

East Prussia

Sommer managed to do some fighting in the Voronezh, all three Ukrainian and the 3rd Belorussian front crossed the Dnieper, Prut and Danube, liberated Kiev. But finest hour by Andrei Iosifovich, received by the time the rank of Colonel, became involved in the East Prussian operation. In January 1945, the Third Reich has in fact been agonizing, but was still a formidable force. Knowing that a cornered and desperate enemy twice as dangerous as the Colonel went to the trick. Here’s how to write about what happened Andrei Sidorchik in the article “Tanks city”.

the Bridge at the settlement Talpaki opened the road to Konigsberg, and therefore was an important point of German defense. Hitler’s elite division was prepared to give here a desperate battle, but later retreated, to destroy the bridge. When the approach in the night from 19 to 20 January was filled tanks, the Germans were prepared for defense. But suddenly from the darkness emerged a staff car. Sitting next to the driver the officer on the German introduced himself: “Panzer group, Colonel Sommer. Sent to gross-Seishiro”.

the Guards relaxed their. The realization of error occurred too late — the approaching tanks were the Soviet T-34 and the armor were red. Colonel Sommer prudently didn’t mention is teamsIl red Army, not to lie in anything. The bridge was captured intact and without a fight, and Panzer group proceeded to the gross-Skaisgirys, cutting the railroad Tilsit — Koenigsberg and Tilsit, and isolating Istanbuls groupings of the Wehrmacht.

In April 1945, Sommer was awarded the rank of General. He himself, after his retirement in 1947, moved to Kaliningrad, where he lived until his death. Remembering the war, he often said, “I did not fight with the fellow, I fought with the Nazis”.

Yaroslav Gorbunov

© Russian Seven

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