Lifesaving Medal


Lifesaving Medal

Prussia’s gold Rettungsmedaille (Lifesaving Medal) was originally established on 13 August 1833 by King Friedrich Wilhelm III as a silver Lifesaving Medal. The gold version is documented as being awarded as early as 1881. It was awarded to any person who through personal danger had saved another person or who had attempted to and was awarded for combat or non-combat - with no distinction made in the award itself. The gold version was intended for those who had clearly qualified but who were of sufficient social status to warrant a special award at the time of their deed. This series of awards ended in 1924 although is seems that some other Prussian Livesaving awards continued until the 1930s.

The Lifesaving Medal is made of various alloys of gold and uses the opposite color ribbon (approximately 30 cm wide, orange with 2 white stripes toward each end - very similar to the 3rd Reich West Wall Medal) as the Order of the Red Eagle. The original drawings of the medal specified that it would be of the same dimensions as the Prussian 1 Mark coin. The original issue obverse had KOENIG VON PREUSSEN*FRIEDRICH WILHELM III circling the King’s profile. The reverse has changed many times but typically has the name of the medal (FÜR RETTUNG AUS GEFAHR) in raised lettering and has a leaf spray circle. Since it was issued over a long span of time, there are many variants.

CommanderDate  Command
Ltn. Albrecht, Werner12 Apr 1913  
Ltn. Andler, Rudolf21 May 1908  

Kptlt. Feldt, Richard27 Sep 1913  
Oblt. Fischer, Waldemar von18 Aug 1916  
Oblt. Forstmann, Walter25 Aug 1908  
Oblt. Forstner, Georg-Günther von20 Nov 1906  

Grünert, Franz5 Mar 1909  

Oblt. Hennig, Heinrich von21 May 1908  

Ltn. Klasing, Johannes12 Nov 1904  
Oblt. Kophamel, Waldemar29 Sep 1904  

Oblt. Lemmer, Johannes15 Oct 1910  
Lorenz, Hellmut16 Sep 1912  

Meusel, Karl18 Jul 1905  

Ltn. Reiche, Curt von15 Feb 1915  

Oblt. Schapler, Kurt28 Oct 1911  
Ltn. Schneider, Rudolf20 Nov 1906  
Oblt. Schweinitz und Krain, Hans Arthur Graf von27 Mar 1909  
Kptlt. Sieß, Gustav4 Mar 1914  
Oblt. Starke, Wilhelm-Friedrich28 Oct 1911  
Oblt. Stohwasser, Herbert1 Nov 1910  
Ltn. Stoßberg, Arthur13 Apr 1914  
Oblt. Studt, Ferdinand27 Sep 1903  

Valentiner, Max18 Oct 1902  

Ltn. Wacker, Karl8 Mar 1913  
Oblt. Waßner, Erwin14 Nov 1915  UC 3
Weddigen, Otto30 Aug 1904  
Oblt. Wickel, Clemens22 Nov 1906  

27 officers decorated with Lifesaving Medal (Rettungsmedaille) located.

Note: This listing is still being compiled and some recipients might be missing.

Back to WWI decorations page