Military Wiki
Gustav-Adolf von Zangen
Born (1892-11-07)7 November 1892
Died 1 May 1964(1964-05-01) (aged 71)
Place of birth Darmstadt
Place of death Hanau
Service/branch Heer
Rank General der Infanterie
Commands held
Awards Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves

Gustav-Adolf von Zangen (7 November 1892 – 1 May 1964) was a German general and the commander of the German 15th Army in the Netherlands in 1944 during World War II. He was also a recipient of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves (German language: Ritterkreuz des Eisernen Kreuzes mit Eichenlaub). The Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross and its higher grade Oak Leaves was awarded to recognise extreme battlefield bravery or successful military leadership.


Zangen was born in Darmstadt in the Grand Duchy of Hesse. He was a veteran of World War I, receiving the honour of the Iron Cross and reached the rank of first lieutenant by the end of the Great War. He had earlier in the war commanded 17th Infantry Division in Russia, a Corps in France in 1943 and an Army detachment in Italy before being appointed to command the 15th Army on the Western Front. Having occupied the Pas de Calais during the 1944 campaign in France, Zangen was forced to evacuate his army, together with remnants of other divisions, across the Scheldt to the island of Walcheren and South Beveland. There, they were attacked during the Battle of the Scheldt 2 October-8 November 1944.[1]

He deployed his force against the Allied advance into the Netherlands. On 24 October 1944 his headquarters in Dordrecht were bombed by the RAF. During the Ardennes offensive starting 16 December 1944, his 15th Army was tasked with fixing the British and U.S. forces north of the Bulge. see also Operation Blackcock, Operation Grenade.

Zangen was taken prisoner of war in April 1945 in the Ruhr Pocket.[2]

  • 1938 - 1941 : Commanding Officer 88th Regiment
  • 1941 - 1943 : General Officer Commanding 17th Division
  • 1943 : General Officer Commanding LXXXIV Corps
  • 1943 : General Officer Commanding LXXXVII Corps
  • 1943 : General Officer Commanding Army Detachment von Zangen, Italy
  • 1943 - 1944 :General Officer Commanding Lower Alps Zone, Italy
  • 1944 : General Officer Commanding 15th Army, the Netherlands

He died in 1964 in Hanau.

Awards and decorations


  1. According to Scherzer as commander of Infanterie-Regiment 88.[5]


  1. Veterans Affairs Canada. The Battle of the Scheldt.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Thomas 1998, p. 468.
  4. Fellgiebel 2000, p. 455.
  5. Scherzer 2007, p. 802.
  6. Fellgiebel 2000, p. 92.
  • Fellgiebel, Walther-Peer (2000) (in German). Die Träger des Ritterkreuzes des Eisernen Kreuzes 1939–1945 – Die Inhaber der höchsten Auszeichnung des Zweiten Weltkrieges aller Wehrmachtsteile [The Bearers of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross 1939–1945 — The Owners of the Highest Award of the Second World War of all Wehrmacht Branches]. Friedberg, Germany: Podzun-Pallas. ISBN 978-3-7909-0284-6. 
  • Scherzer, Veit (2007) (in German). Die Ritterkreuzträger 1939–1945 Die Inhaber des Ritterkreuzes des Eisernen Kreuzes 1939 von Heer, Luftwaffe, Kriegsmarine, Waffen-SS, Volkssturm sowie mit Deutschland verbündeter Streitkräfte nach den Unterlagen des Bundesarchives [The Knight's Cross Bearers 1939–1945 The Holders of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross 1939 by Army, Air Force, Navy, Waffen-SS, Volkssturm and Allied Forces with Germany According to the Documents of the Federal Archives]. Jena, Germany: Scherzers Miltaer-Verlag. ISBN 978-3-938845-17-2. 
  • Thomas, Franz (1998) (in German). Die Eichenlaubträger 1939–1945 Band 2: L–Z [The Oak Leaves Bearers 1939–1945 Volume 2: L–Z]. Osnabrück, Germany: Biblio-Verlag. ISBN 978-3-7648-2300-9. 
Military offices
Preceded by
Generalleutnant Ernst Güntzel
Commander of 17. Infanterie-Division
25 December 1941 – 1 April 1943
Succeeded by
Generalmajor Richard Zimmer
Preceded by
General der Artillerie Hans Behlendorff
Commander of LXXXIV. Armeekorps
1 April 1943 – 1 August 1943
Succeeded by
General der Artillerie Erich Marcks
Preceded by
General Hans von Salmuth
Commander of 15. Armee
25 August 1944 – 18 April 1945
Succeeded by

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