NUGISEKS Harald NEW
* 22.10.1921 Karjaküla/Estland
+ 02.01.2014 Sinimäe/Estland
Awarded Knights Cross: 09.04.1944
as: Unterscharführer Zugführer 1./estn. Freiw.GrenRgt 46
Postwar signed photo measuring 3 ½” x 5 1/2" signed on reverse as well plus signed letter and envelope
Nugiseks who served in the 20th Waffen Grenadier Division (1st Estonian) Nugiseks is also one of the four Estonian soldiers who received the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross.
Nugiseks was born in Vanaõu farmstead, Karjaküla village, Särevere Parish, Järva County, Estonia. In 1943, he voluntarily joined the Estonian Legion. He received the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross for leading the capture of the Vaasa-Siivertsi-Vepsküla bridgehead. As the I Battalion, Waffen-Grenadier Regiment 46 lost almost all of its officers, Nugiseks stepped in as the leader of the attack. He immediately changed tactics, loading the supply of hand grenade onto sledges so the attackers would not have to crawl back for the supplies over the mine field. With the hand grenades being passed on along the trenches, the bridgehead was squeezed in from the north by the "rolling" tactics.
Nugiseks was mentioned in the Wehrmachtbericht and in the magazine Signal following his Knight's Cross award, which was personally given to him by the SA occupation head in Estonia, Karl-Siegmund Litzmann, while Nugiseks was in hospital. It was filmed.
Afterwards Nugiseks was demoted for fighting with some soldiers who were harassing Red Cross nurses. During the Soviet assault on Estonia in September 1944, Nugiseks's home was destroyed. Nugiseks was captured by Czech partisans in May 1945 and put in a POW camp. After three unsuccessful escape attempts, Nugiseks served time after being handed over to the Soviets, who sentenced him to 10 years in the Gulag and 5 years deportation in Siberia. Nugiseks managed to return to Estonia, where he worked until retirement.
In the 1970s, Nugiseks constructed a house for his family with his own hands. In 1992, as a result of his service to his country, Nugiseks was made a Captain of the Estonian Army. Nugiseks attended another Estonian Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross holder, Alfons Rebane's reburial in Estonia in 1999 by the Estonian government. In October 2008, he was awarded the Medal of Gratitude by the Estonian people, after collecting of 4229 signatures.
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