of Knight's Cross Recipients (AKCR) is an association of highly
decorated front-line soldiers of both world wars. The association
was founded in 1955 in Köln-Wahn. Generaloberst Alfred
Keller, Knight of the Order "Pour le Merite" and
Recipient of the Knight's Cross to the Iron Cross, called
upon the recipients of the highest combat decorations for
bravery to organize an association for tradition.. Later,
the Recipients of the Prussian Golden Military Cross, of the
"Pour le Merite" for enlisted personnel were included.
The memorandum of the AKCR incoperates the awarding of 7318
Knight's Crosses, as well as 882 Oakleaves, 159 Swords, 27
Brilliants, 1 Golden Oakleaves and 1 Grandcross to the Iron
Cross for all ranks in three Wehrmachts-parts and the Waffen-SS.
The high decorations were specifically awarded for facing
the enemy with exceptional bravery and troop leadership. This
equates to 0.4% awards of approximately 18 million members
of the Wehrmacht.
of the decorated recpients of the Second World War were either
killed in action, declared missing in action, or died during
of Knight's Cross recipients into an association provides
a link into the honor of the German soldier whose unbreakable
virtues of duty, sacrifice, and comradery were guaranteed.
are closely bound to the Bundeswehr. Since the AKCR was founded
in 1956, seven-hundred and eleven recipients of the Knight's
Cross, many of the highest ranks (117 generals and admirals),
served in the Bundeswehr. Following the reunifiction of Germany,
many new members have emerged from the new states of the Federation
and some members reside abroad.
stands on the foundation of democracy and anticipates its
protection and truth for tradition. Today there are less than
500 recipients, approximately 230 survivor members, 110 surviving
members with full membership and many associate members. Bylaws
and statutes are determined in the nature of the organization
and its communal usefullness has been established and recognized.
Within the "Ring of German Soldiers' Associations"
(approximately.400,000 members), the DAKC is a recognized
union for camradery. The "Knight's Cross Relief Agency"
supports the needy, ie. members of late comrades. The amount
of funds that have been donated are close to 1 million German
Marks. Our newletter, "The Knight's Cross" is read
throughout 20 countries.