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  #1  
Old 5th July 2022, 16:36
Seaplanes Seaplanes is offline
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Late war fighter encounters

On 5 May 1945 Jürgen Pfau escaped to Norway together with more than a 100 Luftwaffe aircraft. In the early morning hours of 8 May Pfau made his last sortie with his Ju 88G-6 Z6+IH of K.G.66. He took off from Stavanger-Sola airfield at 06.47, possibly together with one or more aircraft of his unit. They set course over Skagerrak where the encountered four Hellcat fighters. Pfaus aircraft was hit by 15 bullets and made a landing at Lister airfield in damaged condition at 07.55. Can anyone provide more details of this, possibly, last air combat over or off Norwgian territory.
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  #2  
Old 5th July 2022, 17:08
BruceMk11 BruceMk11 is offline
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Re: Late war fighter encounters

I think they were actually Wildcat Vs of 846 Sqn, flying off HMS Trumpeter. I don't have my references to hand but perhaps someone else does and can provide more detail.
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Old 5th July 2022, 19:21
Rottler Rottler is offline
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Re: Late war fighter encounters

Hello Seaplanes,

a quote from LUFTWAFFE IM FOCUS Spezial No. 2:
….. Several accounts shed light on the Gruppe’s actions:
Ofw Pfau (1./KG 66) wrote:
"At 0647 hours on 8 May 1945, I took off from Stavanger-Sola in my Ju 88 S-3 (Z6+?H) with my observer Fhr Schneider and radio operator Ofw Albert. Shortly after 0700., while flying south over the Skagerrak at about 1000 meters altitude in a cloudless sky, we were attacked by four fighters. Soon afterward we discovered that they were from a British aircraft carrier sailing with other British naval units in the direction of Oslofjord …. Ofw Albert, who was sitting with his back to me manning the machine-gun, was wounded in the shoulder. When the fighter attacks began I altered course, headed toward the Norwegian coast and dropped down to sea level. Ofw Albert had lost a great deal of blood and passed out; Fhr Schneider did what he could for him. After further attacks, in which the aircraft took 15 hits and the left undercarriage was shot up, I made a crash-landing at Lister airfield at 0755. We had signaled an emergency prior to landing, and an ambulance immediately transported Ofw Albert to hospital."

Regards
Leo
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Old 5th July 2022, 23:02
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ju55dk ju55dk is offline
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Re: Late war fighter encounters

Those fighters also hit a Ju 88 A-4 from 14/KG 200.
Junker
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Old 5th July 2022, 23:03
Marcel van Heijkop Marcel van Heijkop is offline
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Re: Late war fighter encounters

Addition: Together with the rest of I./KG66 (or more exact: the part of I./KG66 that had made it to Norway on 5 May..) Ofw. Jürgen Pfau was on his way to the Kurland Pocket on 8 May 1945 in order to evacuate as much German soldiers as they could fit in their bomb bay and cockpit. Despite the fact that it was the last day of the war, it was still an official order. Only the return flight was left up to the crews' own discretion. (Most crews intended to go to Fliegerhorst Dedelstorf, their previous homebase from September 1944 - March 1945, a lot had girlfriends there.)

In the end only a single crew made it to Kurland, the rest claimed technical problems, had suspicions about Kurlands swampy airfields or didn't bother to fly there whatsoever..Apart from Pfau's early aborted mission, on 8 May some 7 aircraft landed at or near Dedelstorf while a few others returned to Stavanger-Sola or Kjevik/Kristiansand.

I haven't come round to identify Pfau's "Hellcats" yet, although British Royal Navy Wildcats (Martlets) were already on my mind as the most likely candidates.

Regards,

Marcel
(I./KG66 Research)
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Old 6th July 2022, 03:02
Tom Semenza Tom Semenza is offline
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Re: Late war fighter encounters

Bruce was close. The following is from David Hobbs The Fleet Air Arm and the War in Europe, 1939-1945:

"Two Ju 88s were detected at 0727 and Wildcats of 882 NAS were vectored to intercept them. One was engaged and damaged but the other indicated its surrender by firing a red Very light and it was escorted to an airfield in Denmark, where it landed at 0945. A further eight Ju 88s were detected at 1110 and shadowed by Wildcats as they made their way harmlessly to Oslo, where they landed."

882 was flying Wildcat VI from HMS Searcher.

Regards,
Tom

Last edited by Tom Semenza; 6th July 2022 at 21:59. Reason: spelling correction
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Old 6th July 2022, 17:45
Seaplanes Seaplanes is offline
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Re: Late war fighter encounters

In his log-book mr. Pfau clearly writes Ju 88G-6 (he previously flew S-3 aircraft) and he also state his opponents to be Hellcats.
Many thanks to all of you for the info.
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Old 6th July 2022, 20:28
MW Giles MW Giles is offline
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Re: Late war fighter encounters

Of course he had seen hundreds of Hellcats up close and could easily make the correct recognition

Martin
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Old 6th July 2022, 22:34
Marcel van Heijkop Marcel van Heijkop is offline
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Re: Late war fighter encounters

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Semenza View Post
Bruce was close. The following is from David Hobbs The Fleet Air Arm and the War in Europe, 1939-1945:

"Two Ju 88s were detected at 0727 and Wildcats of 882 NAS were vectored to intercept them. One was engaged and damaged but the other indicated its surrender by firing a red Very light and it was escorted to an airfield in Denmark, where it landed at 0945. A further eight Ju 88s were detected at 1110 and shadowed by Wildcats as they made their way harmlessly to Oslo, where they landed."

882 was flying Wildcat VI from HMS Searcher.

Regards,
Tom
Thanks Tom, brilliant! Just what I needed

Regards,

Marcel
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Old 7th July 2022, 12:26
keith A keith A is offline
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Re: Late war fighter encounters

At this stage of the war Hellcats were with the fleet carriers in the Far East. His opponents were almost certainly Wildcats (no longer termed Martlets, the name Wildcat came back into use in early 1944) from an Escort Carrier.

I wonder if 882 Squadron were given a victory credit for the Ju88. I had the last Wildcat victory as a Ju88 damaged by 846 Squadron from HMS Trumpeter on 5 May 1945. Unfortunately FAA claims are not as well investigated as those of the RAF.

best regards

Keith
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