, Nominations for the Knight's Cross could be made at company level or higher. According to Scherzer as chief of the 2./schwere SS-Panzer-Abteilung 101. It was always assumed that he was the youngest recipient of the Knight's Cross; however, Günther Nowak never really existed — a deserting Commander of the Volkssturm named Sachs was caught and claimed that, after the retreat of the Wehrmacht, he had destroyed five tanks single-handedly. German law prohibits wearing a swastika, so on 26 July 1957 the West German government authorized replacement Knight's Crosses with an Oak Leaf Cluster in place of the swastika, similar to the Iron Cross of 1914, and the denazified Iron Cross of 1957, which could be worn by World War II recipients. This along with the ? During World War I the Pour Le Merite (*3) or PLM was the highestaward for valor. Fallschirm-Korps, Commander of Panzergrenadier-Regiment 111, Commanding general of XXXXVII. The Prussian king Friedrich Wilhelm III established the Iron Cross at the beginning of the German campaign as part of the Napoleonic Wars.  With the exception of Hermann Fegelein, all of the disputed recipients had received the award in 1945, when the deteriorating situation of the Third Reich during the final days of World War II left the nominations unfinished in various stages of the approval process.. , The nomination had to be forwarded in writing by a courier up the official command chain. Author Veit Scherzer concluded that every presentation of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross, or one of its higher grades, made until 20 April 1945 is verifiable in the German Federal Archives.  As the war progressed, some of the recipients of the Knight's Cross distinguished themselves further and a higher grade, the Oak Leaves to the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross, was instituted. , The Association of Knight's Cross Recipients (AKCR) (German language: Ordensgemeinschaft der Ritterkreuzträger des Eisernen Kreuzes e.V. , The Grand Cross of the Iron Cross is based on the enactment Reichsgesetzblatt I S. 1573 of September 1, 1939 Verordnung über die Erneuerung des Eisernen Kreuzes (Regulation of the renewing of the Iron Cross). These late presentations are considered de facto but not de jure awards. , Administration/Berlin (preliminary decision) → Chief of the Heerespersonalamt/Berlin (preliminary decision) → Oberkommando der Wehrmacht-Department/Berlin (presenting) → Hitler (decision), The Army Personnel Branch Office was split due to the deteriorating war situation and was moved to Marktschellenberg in the time frame 21 to 24 April 1945. The Knight's Cross with Oak Leaves was based on the enactment Reichsgesetzblatt I S. 849 of 3 June 1940. The last presentations by Hitler were made early in 1945 in the Führerbunker in Berlin. Bormann immediately awarded the German Cross in Gold to the Volkssturm-Commander Sachs and the Knight's Cross to Nowak.. The AKCR lists the awarding of 7318 Knight's Crosses, as well as 882 Oak Leaves, 159 Swords, 27 Diamonds, 1 Golden Oak Leaves and 1 Grand Cross of the Iron Cross for all ranks in the three branches of the Wehrmacht and the Waffen-SS. SS-Freiwilligen-Gebirgs-Division "Prinz Eugen", 18. , For the similarly named decoration of the Freikorps, see, Knight's Cross with Oak Leaves and Swords, Knight's Cross with Oak Leaves, Swords, and Diamonds, Knight's Cross with Golden Oak Leaves, Swords, and Diamonds, 25 April 1945 to 30 April 1945 (Hitler's death), 3 May 1945 to 8 May 1945 (Nazi Germany surrenders), Fellgiebel 2000, last page of the addendum, List of Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross recipients, "Reichsgesetzblatt Teil I S. 849; 3 June 1940", "Reichsgesetzblatt 1945 I S. 11; 29 December 1944", Official Note of the German Parliament about contacts between the Bundeswehr and Nazi traditionalist associations, BGBl. Karl Thieme's nomination by the troop was received by the, Heinrich von Lüttwitz's nomination by the troop was received by the, Otto Hitzfeld's nomination was rejected by, Josef Bremm's nomination by the troop was rejected by. One of these sets was presented to Hans-Ulrich Rudel on 1 January 1945; the remaining five sets were taken to Schloss Klessheim, where they were taken by the US forces. They originally appeared in conjunction with the Golden Oak Leaves of the Red Eagle Order, which was the second highest Prussian order after the Black Eagle Order. The award was also noted in the recipients Soldbuch (Soldiers Pay Book), his Wehrpass (Military Identification) and personnel records.  The majority—12 recipients—of these disputed recipients have received the award in 1945. The rank listed is the recipient's rank at the time the Knight's Cross was awarded. The Deutsche Dienststelle (WASt) came to the conclusion that this decree is unlawful and bears no legal justification. According to Scherzer as commanding general of the I. SS-Panzerkorps. The nomination by the troop had to be submitted in writing and in double copy. Fearing that his lie would be unveiled, he created the story of Günther Nowak in order to lessen his own "feat". , The "Knight's Cross with Oak Leaves, Swords and Diamonds" is based on the enactment Reichsgesetzblatt I S. 613 of 28 September 1941 to reward those servicemen who had already been awarded the Oak Leaves with Swords to the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross. , The Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves (Ritterkreuz des Eisernen Kreuzes mit Eichenlaub) was instituted on 3 June 1940.