Max Hansen joined the SS-Verfügungstruppe in 1933 and by 1939 was the commander of the 12th Company in the Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler (LSSAH). In 1941, he was awarded the German Cross in Gold and promoted to Sturmbannführer (major). He was given command of the II./1st Panzer Grenadier Regiment LSSAH.
It was whilst commanding this battalion during the Third Battle of Kharkov on 28 March 1943 that Hansen was awarded the Knight's Cross. His battalion broke through to Red Square in Kharkov, conducted house-to-house fighting and opened the way to the city center, so that the northern part of Kharkov could be taken.
Hansen later went on to command the 1st SS Panzer Grenadier Regiment LSSAH. With his Kampfgruppe Hansen he took part in the Ardennes Offensive and the 1945 "Operation Spring Awakening" offensive in Hungary, during which he was awarded the Oak Leaves to his Knight's Cross.
Max Hansen was one of only 98 German soldiers and officers that received both the Ritterkreuz and the Nahkampfspange in Gold. He ended the war as a Standartenführer.
Max Hansen suffered from Alzheimer for many years before he passed away. In his obituary it says that his spirit had left for Valhalla long before his body followed. Max Hansen died on 07-03-1990, age 81 and is buried with his wife Merry, who died age 74 in 1983, in the local cemetery of Niebülll in Schleswig-Holstein, northern Germany.
His gravestone was removed from the grave in 2015 ?? Anybody know more about this ? Was his grave vandalized or desecrated ?