Luftwaffe and Allied Air Forces Discussion Forum  

Go Back   Luftwaffe and Allied Air Forces Discussion Forum > Discussion > Luftwaffe and Axis Air Forces

Luftwaffe and Axis Air Forces Please use this forum to discuss the German Luftwaffe and the Air Forces of its Allies.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 11th March 2008, 07:31
P61Studies P61Studies is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 7
P61Studies is on a distinguished road
Cham, Germany Losses April 1945

I'm looking for info on two different incidents in April listed below at/near Cham, Bavaria, Germany.

On or around April 23rd, 1945 at ca 2030 hours local time, a group of three German a/c (types unknown) apparently tried to land at the airfield near Cham. The airfield has recently been captured by Co D, 41st Tank Battalion (US), & apparently had both AA guns and aircraft on-site when captured. At least one of the three a/c landed, & a platoon from Co D captured the pilot, who apparently also had his "girlfriend" with him in the a/c.

On or around April 24th, 1945 at ca 0500 hours, in the vicinity of Cham, a German "recon plane" was shot down in the vicinity of Cham, near the 41st Tank Battalion's area, by elements of the 491st Field Artillery (US). It would seem the a/c crashed in an open field & the pilot survived. AFter being ordered to halt, the pilot tried to do a runner and was shot & killed by one of the sentries.

I am not positive on either date, but I believe both to be within a day or so of accuracy. Any corresponding losses?
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 11th March 2008, 19:36
Steve Coates Steve Coates is online now
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Dorset England
Posts: 386
Steve Coates is on a distinguished road
Re: Cham, Germany Losses April 1945

There is an event described in my book 'Helicopters Of The Third Reich' which might tie in.


A detachment from Transportstaffel 40 had travelled to Berlin-Tempelhof to try and secure new production Fa 223s from the Weser production line. As it transpired, none had reached a sufficient state of completion and the detachment decided to return to Ainring. As there was no possibility of flying out of Berlin-Tempelhof, the Transportsaffel 40 pilots made their way to Berlin-Staaken where they were able to secure the use of three aircraft belonging to the Kurierstaffel OKL, a Bf 108 and two Fi 156s. The Bf 108 was flown by Uffz. Max Schmid and is believed to have been coded GS+EO, Oblt. Franz Lankenau flew an Fi 156 D-0 CQ+QD (W.Nr. 4437). Uffz. Heinz Lex flew the other Fi 156, whose identity remains unknown as Lex's Flugbuch was 'lost'. The return flight was not without incident. It is known that all three were separated by anti-aircraft fire over Cham on 23 April. Lex was forced to make an emergency landing and was captured by the Americans. Schmid and Lankenau both made their own separate way back to Ainring, arriving on 24 April.


Owing to space restrictions, I had to condense the information I had on this episode in the book. It would appear that the 'girlfriend' was possibly a signals auxiiliary, Frau Kufthe. Schmid also conveyed an auxiliary by the name of Frau Holste.


This small convoy had taken off from Prag-Gbell at around 19.15 and landed at Geisling at 21.25 so this fits in with your timeframe. I should mention at this point that Lankenau's Flugbuch refers to this flight taking place on 24 April but a contemporary journal of his refers to 23 April. I have always been more inclined to believe the journal as Flugbuch entries at the stage of the war were often written up much later.


I will try and dig out Lankenau's chronicle over the next couple of days and will post this up but I'll have to translate it first so please bear with any delay.

It goes without saying that I am very interested in anything more you might have on this. Is there any possibility a photo of Lex or his Fi 156 might exist. Is there a veterans association for the unit ? What is your interest ?
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 12th March 2008, 06:58
P61Studies P61Studies is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 7
P61Studies is on a distinguished road
Re: Cham, Germany Losses April 1945

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Coates View Post

A detachment from Transportstaffel 40...

It would appear that the 'girlfriend' was possibly a signals auxiiliary...

I will try and dig out Lankenau's chronicle over the next couple of days and will post this up but I'll have to translate it first so please bear with any delay.

It goes without saying that I am very interested in anything more you might have on this. Is there any possibility a photo of Lex or his Fi 156 might exist. Is there a veterans association for the unit ? What is your interest ?


Steve -

It would seem that this is almost certainly the first incident in question. Thank you so much! The fact there were three aircraft, that one landed & was captured, & the connection with the female auxiliaries is too much to likely pass as chance.

Unfortunantly I do not have any photos, but there's an off chance there could be one in the archives associated with the 41st Tank Battalion &/or the 11th AD (of whom the 41st was a part of).

I see the incident is mentioned on the 11th AD's website. I sent you the web addy via PM...I don't recall if we can post weblinks here.

I have a interest for a few reasons. A neighbor, who's sadly passed now, served in the 41st TB during the war. I had his recollections in my notes, and I've been going through the various oral histories I've collected, trying to flesh out the candidates for shoot-downs and the like as well. Just happened to run across his info the other day. Unfortunantly I do not have much to add, as he only could barely recalled the event.

Interestingly, I noticed on the 41st TB, Co D's combat diary entry for April 23rd notes that the airfield had "sixty planes intact", & that "two ME-109s" were seen over their area & that both were claimed shot down by AA fire. This doesn't jive with the 41st TB's general account of the incident, also on the website, which does jive with what my old neighbor had told me. Unless, of course, there was another incident that DID involve "two ME-109s" that is totally different than the main 41st TB's account. Or it could just be the normal confusion of the day put to paper.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 12th March 2008, 20:17
Steve Coates Steve Coates is online now
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Dorset England
Posts: 386
Steve Coates is on a distinguished road
Re: Cham, Germany Losses April 1945

Thanks for your response on board and via PM. After posting last night, I did an internet trawl and came up with the links you kindly sent me which don't really add to your own posting but this is a good start point to try and take this forward.

As I said, I'll work on a translation of Lankenau's chronicle and will try and stick this up over the weekend.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 15th March 2008, 00:42
Steve Coates Steve Coates is online now
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Dorset England
Posts: 386
Steve Coates is on a distinguished road
Re: Cham, Germany Losses April 1945

Here's a fairly rough and ready translation of Lankenau's chronicle.

19.30 hrs - set out for Cham. I will land there in the twilight. I reckon the American frontline should have reached the pasture land, approximately 100 km north of Cham. I fly through rain showers and see burning farmsteads beneath me. At Cham I see tanks in the square. On the assumption these are German tanks, I fire off recognition ammunition and instantly receive back flak. The Americans have already reached Cham although I am still of the opinion that German tanks are mistakenly shooting at me. I set the Fi 156 on its nose until almost at ground level and the shots no longer trouble me. For the second time this day I benefit from uncanny luck.

I set down to land. There are burned out fighters. I see two Fi 156s in front of me. Then I notice American markings on the ground surfaces. It then dawns on me and I give some gas and escape in a low altitude flight. The Americans shoot but don't hit me. Twilight is falling and I can only indistinctly recognise the surrounding area. To the south of me are closely packed rain showers. I follow a south west course. It is now dark. I can no longer follow the map. My aim is to reach the Danube. I know from experience that Regensburg lies to the west of me, east of me is Straubing. The showers hang over me and I must take great care not to collide with any trees.

At last the broad expanse of the Danube is beneath me. In the west, in the direction of Regensburg, I can see flak. Therefore I try to fly eastwards in the direction of Straubing. I can't get through because of the rain showers and must turn around again. Then beneath me I see the shining white shining tower of a church in a village along a road. Between the road and the forest, there's a patch of empty land. Quick decision, land and roll out my Fi 156. Smooth landing, thank God ! Had there been any ditches or furrows I could easily have had an accident.

The other pilot, Schmid actually managed to make it through to Straubing.

Now to see if it's possible to get to the bottom of Lex's capture.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
P-51 losses / JG 7 claims 8 April 1945 ChristianK Allied and Soviet Air Forces 5 11th February 2008 02:07
P-51 losses on 10 April 1945 Eric Larger Allied and Soviet Air Forces 11 4th September 2007 18:02
Russian losses on Berlin Battle April 1945 Eric Larger Allied and Soviet Air Forces 0 8th April 2006 14:50
Soviet air force losses 1941-1945 Six Nifty .50s Allied and Soviet Air Forces 12 15th May 2005 17:57
Fw190 losses over Austria 5th April 1945 Alex Smart Luftwaffe and Axis Air Forces 1 6th February 2005 02:06


All times are GMT +2. The time now is 23:14.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.2
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ©2004 - 2018, 12oclockhigh.net