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General Ernesto Chiminello


Staff member
by GLADIVM » Fri Mar 31, 2006 2:43 am

I am looking for info about Major General Ernesto Chiminello career.

Unfortunately, Chimnello was ill-starred, till June 43 he was C.O. of division Acqui and then transferred to Division Perugia.
In Sept 43, having Division Perugia in Albania opposed resistance against Germans, after the surrender he was shot and his head severed from the body paraded around Albanian villages in revenge for the Italian invasion of 1939.

Had he stayed at Division Acqui in Cefalonia he would have still most probably been shot by germans as it happened to his substitute general Gandin.
One way or another he would have not escaped a grim fate.

Thanks for any help.


by Steen Ammentorp » Tue Apr 04, 2006 9:38 am


Do you know on which date he was shot?


by GLADIVM » Tue Apr 04, 2006 11:26 am

Dear Steen,

I cannot find an exact date but must have been in the early days of October 1943.


Staff member
by FB » Wed Apr 05, 2006 2:09 am

From Gino Bambara's book Non Solo Armistizio (Not Only Armistice), Vanini Editrice.

The following is the list of all the Perugia Division Officers killed by the Germans under the command of Gen. Walter von Stettner, CO of 1st Alpenjaeger Division.

* = Awarded MOVM alla memoria (posthumous Gold Medal)

** = Awarded MAVM alla memoria (posthumous Silver Medal)

Officers Killed at Santi Quaranta:

Oct. 4, 1943

1) Maj. Gen. Ernesto CHIMINELLO, CO Perugia Div.
2) Maj. Sergio BERNARDELLI *, CoS

Oct. 5, 1943

Division Perugia Command

1) Lt. Col. Alberto DE SIRI *, Chief of II Section of Div. Com.
2) Maj. Veterinary Dr. Alcide TENTOLINI *, Chief of Veterinary Services
3) Capt. Alfonso DE ZINNO *, Div. Com.; formerly Chief of Adm. Office c/o the 129° Rgt. Command in Rijeka Crnojevica
3) Capt. Antonio MACIOCI, Div. Comm.
4) Lt. Giuseppe LA LICATA *, Div. Com.
5) Lt. Achille SICA *, HQ's Adm. Office
6) 2nd Lt. Alberto ABONANDI *, idem
7) 2nd Lt. Callisto BOLLINI *, 151st Sumit Section, Bread makers
8 ) 2nd Lt. Pietro FELICIANGELI *, idem

I Btg, 129 Inf. Rgt.

1) Lt. Col. Domenico PENNESTRI' **, CO
2) Lt. Alberto BOFFI *, II Adjutant General
3) 2nd Lt. Paride BOLOGNA *, from Legnago (Verona)
4) 2nd Lt. Giulio CORDA *, from Serrenti (Cagliari)
5) Lt. Augusto DE STEFANIS *, from Torricella Sabina (Rieti)
6) 2nd Lt. Nello CICCONI *, from Macerata
7) 2nd Lt. Alfredo GEMELLI *, from Palmi (Reggio Calabria)
8 ) Lt. Vito LANZETTA, from Bella (Potenza)
9) Capt. Antonio MANNINO *, from Carini (Palermo), formerly Cp. CO in III/129 Rgt.
10) Lt. Tommaso MASTRANDEA (MASTANDEA?) *, from Giovinazzo (Bari)
11) 2nd Lt. Salvatore PETITO *, from Avellino
12) Lt. Mario SARLI *, from Potenza
13) 2nd Lt. Aldo TEMPERINI *
14) Capt. Vittorio VIGNERI *, from Bari
15) 2nd Lt. Salvatore ZOCCO *, from Canicattini Bagni (Siracusa)

III Btg., 129 Inf. Rgt.

1) Maj. Mario GIGANTE **, CO, from Napoli
2) 2nd Lt. Giosuè GIRLANDA *, Adjutant General, from Reggio Calabria
3) 2nd Lt. Giuseppe BOSCARINO *, from Racalmuto (Agrigento), 10th Cp.
4) 2nd Lt. Salvatore CACCIOLLA *, from Messina, 9th Cp.
5) 2nd Lt. Gennaro CASTALDO, from Afragola (Napoli), 9th Cp.
6) Lt. Arturo CICCOLINI *, from Macerata, CO Comm. Cp.
7) Capt. Armando CULOTTA, Sicilian, CO 12th Cp.
8 ) 2nd Lt. Giuseppe D'ALTO *, from Teggiano (Salerno), 9th cp.
9) Lt. Libero FIORENZA, from Pazzano (Reggio Calabria), 9th Cp
10) Lt. Ermanno GASPARINI *, from Montecarotto (Ancona), CO 10th Cp.
11) 2nd Lt. Giovanni PASSARELLO, from Noto (Siracusa), II Adj. Gen.
12) 2nd Lt. Vincenzo PRESTIANNI *, from Palermo, CO 11th Cp. (later Lt.)
13) 2nd Lt. Emilio ROSSI *, from Milano, 12th Cp.
14) 2nd Lt. Enrico SIRACUSA *, from Milano, Comm. Cp.
15) 2nd Lt. Franceso TRINGALI, from Lentini (Siracusa), 4th Cp.
16) 2nd Lt. Salvatore TULUMELLO *, from Racalmuto (Agrigento), 10th Cp.
17) 2nd Lt. Vitaliano VAGNINI, from Fano (Pesaro)

I Grp., 14th arty Rgt. "Ferrara"

1) Capt. Alfonso CIUCCI *, from Spezzano Albanese (Cosenza)
2) 2nd Lt. Carlo COLLINI *, from Firenze
3) 2nd Lt. Giuseppe CORSALETTI *, from Fano (Pesaro)
4) 2nd Lt. Elio D?ANTEO *, from San Ferdinando a Settimo (Pisa)
5) 2nd Lt. Alfredo MAZZA *, from Roma
6) 2nd Lt. Gian Michele PIATTI*, from Milano
7) 2nd Lt. Giuseppe POZZI *, from Busto Arsizio (Varese)
8 ) 2nd Lt. Antonio ROTONDI *, from Vicenza
9) Cap. Veterinary Dr. Sergio STEFANINI *, from San Miniato (Pisa)
10) Lt. Francesco VAGLIO*, from San Michele di Mondovì (Cuneo)
11) probably here died also Lt. Col. Archimede COSTADURA *, from Galatone (Lecce)

III Btg. , 49th Inf. Rgt. "Parma"

1) Lt. Bellino BELLI, from Parma
2) 2nd Lt. Attilio BETTI, from Urbino
3) 2nd Lt. Luigi MARCONATO, from Mestre (Venezia)
4) Lt. Raffaele RANIERI, from Reggio Calabria
5) Capt. Mario ROVELLA, from Siracusa
6) Capt. Mario SPINA *, from Potenza Picena (Macerata)
7) Capt. Enrico TRECCANI *, from Verona

Killed at Kuc (Kucj)

Oct. 7, 1943

Command 129 Inf. Rgt. "Perugia"

1) Col. Gustavo LANZA **, CO, from Roma
2) Maj. Pietro MALERBA *, Adj. Gen., from Catania
3) 2nd Lt. Rodolfo BETTI **, from Perugia

Regimental Command Company, 129 Inf. Rgt. "Perugia"

1) Capt. Remo COLETTI *, from Perugia
2) Lt. Eros CALVIERI *, from Napoli (?)
3) Lt. Bruno MUNDULA *, from Roma
4) Lt. Alfonso PIERGENTILI *, from Napoli (?)
5) Lt. Rodolfo VIOLO, from Roma
6) 2nd Lt. Gennaro DE MAJO *

II Btg., 129 Inf. Rgt. (Cyclist Battallion)

1) Lt. Col. Emilio CIRINO **, CO
2) Capt. Angelo MAZZOLANI *
3) Capt. Luigi MINELLI *
4) Capt. Guglielmo VARNER *
5) Lt. Giuseppe MEROLA *
6) Lt. Vincenzo RAGO *
7) 2nd Lt. Angelo AZZOLINI *
8 ) 2nd Lt. Antonio CALDARELLA *
9) 2nd Lt. Pietro DERCHI *
10) 2nd Lt. Mario FRATINI *
11) 2nd Lt. Werther MARCHI *
12) 2nd Lt. Franco PARENTE *
13) 2nd Lt. Giorgio SCARFONE *
14) 2nd Lt. Filippo SCUCCHIA *
15) 2nd Lt. Neno SOTTILI *
16) 2nd Lt. Vincenzo TUFANO *
17) 2nd Lt. Sergio ZANETTIN *

47/32 Gun Company

1) Lt. Archimede D'URBANO *, CO, from Chieti
2) 2nd Lt. Egisto BIAGINI *
3) 2nd Lt. Edoardo SIMONELLI *, from Napoli

Officers Aggregate to "Lanza" Group

1) Lt. Bruno FARAGLIA *, III Btg./129 inf. Rgt.
2) Lt. Mino BESTETTI *, III Btg./130 Inf. Rgt., II Adj. Gen.
3) 2nd Lt. Nazzareno RIDOLFI, III Btg./130 inf. Rgt.

CLI Divisional Engineer Battallion

1) Maj. Stefano FATO *, CO
3) 2nd Lt. Alberto CACCINELLI *

4) Capt. Pierluigi CHIARAMONTI * (killed a Giorgiokat)
5) 2nd Lt. Mario PEZZOLI * (killed at Giorgiokat)

Quite a long list. I used the word killed, but this was not in action. After several days of wandering in the region, fighting against ballist partizans, trying to get to Santi Quanaranta where a fleet was supposed to pick the division up and bring it to Italy, avoiding clashes with the Germans, with the Division itself falling literally into pieces, when the Germans managed to get their hands on what they could capture, they divided the Officers from the troops and "executed" all of them. This list is the outcome of the collection of information gathered by the author in at least 3 or 4 different diaries and memories written by survivors. The only spared officers were the Chaplains and (probably) the Doctors.

Best regards

P.S.: in the mentioned book the author comes to the conclusion, citing witnesses, that Gen. Chiminello's head has never benn seveed from the body, let alone it being impaled and "toured" in nearby villages.


Staff member
by GLADIVM » Wed Apr 05, 2006 2:45 am

Thanks, FB,

Interesting info and such a long list of unlucky soldiers.

Many of Perugia division the officers were awarded posthumous Gold or Silver Medal but not General Chiminello, I find this quite strange, one would have thought that the General was the one who animated the division's resistance. This makes me wonder if Chiminiello was really eager to fight the Germans or was just carried along by his officers as happened in Kefalonia to Gen Gandin.

Glad to hear that Chiminiello was spared the last insult of having his head severed and carried around, I read of this episode in various sources so believed it to the true.


by FB » Wed Apr 05, 2006 4:50 am

GLADIVM wrote:Thanks FB ,

Interesting infos and such a long list of unlucky soldiers .

Many of Perugia division the officers were awarded posthomous Gold or Silver Medal but not General Chiminiello , I find this quite strange , one would have thought that the General was the one who animated the division's resistance . This makes me wonder if Chiminiello was really eager to fight the germans or was just carried along by his officers as happened in Kefalonia to Gen Gandin .

Glad to hear that Chiminiello was spared the last insult of having his head severed and carried around , I read of this episode in various sources so believed it to the true .



To sum up the mess into which Perugia Div ended up, according to the mentioned book, Gen. Chiminello practically lost the command of his Division when his subordinate officers, like Brig. Gen. Giuseppe Adami, commander of the Div.'s Infantry, and some of the Cols, autonomously and independently (apparently) tried to make agreements with the partisans (of different "colours"), with those supported by the Allies (there was Maj H. W. Tillman, British, with whom talks were brought on), and with the Germans. Eventually, the bulk of the Division managed to get to Santi Quaranta. Anyway: Gen. Adami, Col. Eugenio Ragghianti (130 Inf. Rgt. CO) studied, in Tepeleni, a plan according to which the Div. would fight in the mountains side by side with the partisans and the Allies and hand over to these last part of the weapons. Maj. Simone Ciampa, III Btl./130 Inf. Rgt. CO, was the Officer who physically met Maj. Tillmann and the partisans. After these talks, Maj. Ciampa with partizans' representatives went to Argirocastro in order to get Gen. Chminello's official approval of the plan. Chiminello approved the plan officially and in writing. The Cols, on the other hand, did not and sent out a counter-message to the effect of canceling their Commander's decision. A plain act of insubordination, a very bed one being the unit in such a grave situation. The act, though, demonstrates a profound command crisis in the Division, a thing that can also be gathered by the (autonomous according to some witnesses) initiative taken by Gen. Adami. These internal problems had the effect of practically exonerate Gen. Chiminello. As a consequence Gen. Chiminello fell prey of a "grave depressive psychosis", in the words of father Scanagatta, a Div. Chaplain.

Anyway, they went to Santi Quaranta following a Gen. Ambrosio's message dropped from a plane coming from Brindisi (the Div. had destroyed its codebook), advising them of the ships that would have been there to pick them up. In effect, a convoy arrived there but was enough to carry only the hospitals, the ill/wounded and the accompanying personnel. A Division officer, Lt. Col. Cirino, managed to find a boat and went to Brindisi, in order to get a new codebook, instructions, etc. Contrary ti his orders that obliged him to remain in Italy, he personally brought the infos back. An action that would cost him his life.

Another message arrived, from Ambrosio, ordering to get to Porto Palermo, being the Santi Quaranta harbor not reachable anymore because of the fall of Corfù into German's hands. En route the Porto Palermo the columns were isolated and captured by the Germans. Only a few groups managed to escape. They were unarmed because Gen. Chiminello accepted to hand them over to the partisans in order to get a free way to Porto Palermo. Also, those units that tried another way up in the mountains, preserving their weaponry, fell into German hands in Kucj.

Best regards


Staff member
by Steen Ammentorp » Wed Apr 05, 2006 7:58 am

Thanks, FB,

Excellent information. Do any of you have additional info about Guiseppe Adami? Some Googling shows that he was in command of 5th Alpine Regiment as late as 13th of August 1943 http://www.larchivio.org/xoom/alp/sti/002.htm


by FB » Thu Apr 06, 2006 1:08 am

Steen Ammentorp wrote:Thanks FB,

Excellent information. Do any of you have additional about Guiseppe Adami? Some Googling shows that he was in command of 5th Alpine Regiment as late as 13th of August 1943 http://www.larchivio.org/xoom/alp/sti/002.htm

Thank you Steen. I would have bet a good pizza that you'd recognize Gen. Adami as the former CO of the 5th Alpini Regiment (he commanded it in Russia)

Here is some more info about Chiminello and Adami (and others), always from the same book. Mind you though that what is written in this book is the result of very long studies and interviews of the author (himself a veteran of the mess into which Regio Esercito found itself in the area) and as such there could be some imprecisions. Usually though the author recognizes the not 100% sure&confirmed info using conditional verb forms and/or listing the different versions.

Perugia Div. is said to have been in a double crisis at Sept. 9, 1943:

- it had been moved in Albania only shortly before (one source says mid-Aug; two agree on mid-July). as a consequence, the unit was still in deploying crisis, at least partial, since it had 2 Arty Groups of the 151 Rgt still in Montenegro. All the other units had reached their destinations only a few weeks before and were placed around the town of Argirocastro, roughly speaking.

- Command crisis and this is what will probably interest you most: the Div. "top brasses" had been changed "at about the end of August", to literally quote the book. Gen. Riccardo Pentimalli (former Div. CO) was sent back in Italy to assume command of an Army Corps (unspecified in the book). Together with him also left the CoS and "other officers". Gen Chiminello assumed the command and is judged in the book as being "certainly completely foreign to the problems of the operative theatre of Albania and, even worst, to the Division environment. To this, it must be added that his age and his health condition did not allow him to exert command with clear mind and determination". Also the Div. Inf. Commander, Gen Adami, was new (no date given, but the end of August sounds pretty good to me, seen the official papers of his former Regiment that file him as gone by Aug 18, 1943). Gen. Adami took the place of Gen. Luridiana. Adami is said to have been captured.

At the end of the '30s, Gen. Adami (but I don't know with which rank, probably Maj. or Lt. Col., since he was Col./"fresh" Brig. Gen. in 1943) was in Ethiopia. And there he was charged with one duty, probably not very known: the Duke of Aosta, in agreement with the Duce, (and the ok of the British) ordered him to find a suitable place in the Empire for the possible arrival of European Jews since no other Country wanted them. USA was more or less ignoring the problem, France and Switzerland did not want them, Palestine was another no-no since the UK said no (and this explains the yes to Italy in this case), etc.

Adami's mission identified an area, which in the word of the Duke of Aosta should have been a "paradise on earth", in the region between Neghelli and the Kenyan border. His final report to the Duke, who sent a copy of it to Mussolini, is dated Dec 5 1938.

Best regards


Staff member
by FB » Thu Apr 06, 2006 2:01 am

Again about Gen. Adami:

looking at other documents in the link you provided:

he was born at L'Aquila (apparently), on Jan 6, 1891

there's also the copy of the telegram with which he is ordered to assume the Perugia Div. Infantry command:

TELEGRAM 8/8/1943



Then in the following regimental internal communication is said that he left the regiment on 13/08/1943. But was paid by the Rgt. until the 16th, same month.


by BRY » Thu Apr 06, 2006 2:51 am

You certainly do a good job of illustrating the very difficult choices that had to be made in this area, and many others for sure. Maltreatment weighed very large in the minds of many soldiers.


by GLADIVM » Fri Apr 07, 2006 12:39 am

The following link can find info about the death of Capt Remo Coletti of Perugia division and his friend Tenant Rodolfo Betti, unfortunately, the text is only in Italian.


by Steen Ammentorp » Fri Apr 07, 2006 8:19 am

Thanks, FB,

Again excellent info. Much appreciated.

by capt_morpheme » Fri Jun 18, 2010 7:42 am
Gen. Chiminello was killed by Germans of 1st Infantry Division Gerbisjager on 4 October 1943 at Baia Limione, a little bay north of Sarande (Porto Edda)
He was killed with Maj. Sergio Bernardelli at 16.45. There are 2 pictures of the murder taken by Germans.
For the picture contact me. I'll PM.