View Full Version : D-day Luftwaffe raids....

01-31-2005, 10:19 AM
Did any luftwaffe aircraft that came over the armada actually live to tell the tale? Or were they suicide missions?

01-31-2005, 10:36 AM
VERY few ops by the lw on Dday, everywhere.

think a few 190's straffed the beaches or something, but was only 2 i think.

13,000+ sorties by the allies on Dday, nearer 13 for the luftwaffe http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif

01-31-2005, 10:40 AM
night from 6th to 7th June 1944:
II./KG40 with He 177 attacked allied ships at the coast of Normandy with Hs 293 glide bombs. Because of heavy allied night fighter activities the attack was not very succesful. II./KG 40 lost 4 He 177 (shot down by RAF 456th squadron)

01-31-2005, 10:55 AM
There's a fabled story of two intrepid 109 pilots who made a strafing pass on June 6, but it doesn't seem to be rock solid agreed upon by everyone.

Pretty much, the long and short of it was: minimal, if any, Luftwaffe air activity on The Longest Day.

01-31-2005, 11:01 AM
No exactly over the armada but worth of mention is the only German daylight air attack of the entire invasion. Two FW-190s of JG 26, flown by Josef "Pips" Priller (GeschwaderKommodore) and Sergeant Heinz Wodarczyk, who strafed the beach at an altitude of 50 feet before escaping through a gauntlet of anti-aircraft fire.

01-31-2005, 11:03 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Stiglr:
There's a fabled story of two intrepid 109 pilots who made a strafing pass on June 6, but it doesn't seem to be rock solid agreed upon by everyone.

Pretty much, the long and short of it was: minimal, if any, Luftwaffe air activity on The Longest Day. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

I have heard about those two Bf-109:s ever since I was a kid, over 30 years ago! That is one of the topics the older guys talked about when talking about Normandy.


01-31-2005, 02:18 PM
I believe JOR is correct....two FW190's...Not sure that I ever heard of BF109's though.

01-31-2005, 03:18 PM
Correct me if I'm wrong but Ju-88s made an attempt at sunset to try and bomb the beaches. They were intercepted by No. 401 squadrons Spitfires and shot down. I think one of the Ju-88 kills was attributed to Arthur Bishop, son of Canadian fighter ace Billy Bishop.

01-31-2005, 03:51 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Fliegeroffizier:
I believe JOR is correct....two FW190's...Not sure that I ever heard of BF109's though. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Definitely two Focke Wulfs. In the movie the longest day I believe the planes are actually Me108s, a two seat trainer built by messerschmitt.

01-31-2005, 03:56 PM

Over Gold Beach, on June 6, 1944, the Spitfires of 401 Squadron thwart an attack by JU-88s, shooting down no fewer than six in the process. Arthur Bishop, son of WW1 ace, Billy Bishop, is shown bringing down the Junkers.

George Negus Tonight :: history :: Transcripts :: Luftwaffe Pilot

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Luftwaffe Pilot
Broadcast 6.30pm on 17/05/2004

Erich Sommer

As World War Two began to slowly turn in the Allies favour, German technologists continued to feverishly fine-tune their latest creation €" the world€s first jet reconnaissance planes. These Arado jets could fly higher and faster than any Allied aircraft.
In August 1944, one of the Luftwaffe's most experienced and well-respected test pilots, Erich Sommer, flew the world€s first jet reconnaissance mission. It took him right over the site of the Allies€ D-Day landing in Normandy. The film from this flight showed the Germans just what they were up against.
Erich Sommer was handy with a film camera on other occasions too, and his footage serves as a priceless record of this amazing chapter in aviation history.

Arado 234

Erich Sommer, a well decorated Luftwaffe navigator and pilot.

GEORGE NEGUS: And now for something about as different as it can get and still be on the same subject, a German-Australian who was once a decorated test pilot for Adolf himself. These days, Erich Sommer is one of those dinky-di Aussie retirees, but back in 1943, with the war at a pretty desperate point for the Germans, Erich's job was to help finetune the world's first reconnaissance jet aircraft.

KEN MERRICK, AVIATION WRITER: Erich Sommer was a well-decorated Luftwaffe navigator and pilot. And his leadership qualities won him very great respect from his peers and from his superiors. Erich was also awarded something quite unique - a silver chalice that was engraved to record his abilities and skills in the air. But it's his camera skills that have given us this priceless record of the race against time to develop the Arado 234.

ERICH SOMMER: It was a fantastic aircraft. I could outfly any enemy plane. You knew nobody can touch you because your speed was superior to any enemy aircraft's speed. When I was alone in there, nobody could tell me what to do.

KEN MERRICK: Reconnaissance was critical to any war situation. The Germans wanted a high-speed, long-range reconnaissance aircraft, was so fast that it could operate with impunity, and that was the idea behind the Arado 234.

ERICH SOMMER: I filmed the Arado because I wanted to have a testimonial for what happened actually. It is important for a pilot to have evidence of what he did. We took off on the trolley - on the three-wheel trolley. And you can see a skid on top of it, and on this skid we laid it. After you rev up the engines, and you take off and lift slowly above the trolley, you shot out and left the trolley on the ground.

KEN MERRICK: Erich, because of this specialist unit that he flew with, which was a unit within the Luftwaffe's high command, was called on to do all sorts of experimental work that was outside the normal parameters of purely testing a new aircraft.

ERICH SOMMER: My task was, from the beginning on this aircraft, just to take pictures. Inside the cockpit, and you felt like being in a glass tunnel.

KEN MERRICK: The pilot had an absolutely superb view, which for a reconnaissance pilot is exactly what you want. It's probably the cleanest and best reconnaissance aircraft of the period. A test pilot's life was pretty hectic. It was dangerous, and a lot of good pilots lost their lives.

ERICH SOMMER: Some people came down too fast and pushed the nose down in the dirt. I didn't do that. (Laughs)

KEN MERRICK: Erich started his operational flying with a pilot named Horst Goetz. The two men struck up a distinct rapport.

ERICH SOMMER: One day when Horst was flying, I was on the ground filming. And he released the rockets. The parachute didn't work. Didn't work at all. It crashed in front of me. (Laughs) In front of my nose.

KEN MERRICK: Perhaps the most significant flight that Erich carried out was on August 2, 1944. The Allies had landed in France, but where and how many?

ERICH SOMMER: The mission was to do the first reconnaissance mission over the D-day invasion front in Normandy. That was the first jet reconnaissance mission in the world.

KEN MERRICK: It took 12 photo interpreters two days to analyse the data, and when it was finished, for the first time the Germans actually knew how much material and men had been landed at D-day. And that was the significance of the Arado 234. If it had done nothing else, that was probably worth it for just that one operation. Had the Arado 234 been available by 1942, its value in terms of reconnaissance information would have been quite significant. Whether it would have changed the course of the war is debatable. It could provide the information, but the rest of the forces were unable to stem the tide from the east, no matter how good the reconnaissance information.

GEORGE NEGUS: Erich Sommer and his old mate the Arado - the World War II German jet that clearly still gets Erich's adrenaline pumping.

01-31-2005, 04:03 PM
Operation Overlord kicked off with 6,500 naval and transport vessels in 75 convoys converging on Normandy. At 6:30 on June 6, 1944 British, Common Wealth and US troops landed on five beaches along the Normandy coast. An aireal umbrella covered the landings with 4,900 fighters and 5,800 bombers flying 14,600 sorties (not counting transports) in the first 24 hours. By midnight 57,000 US and 75,000 British and Common Wealth troops were ashore and linking together. The Luftwaffe could barely muster 300 sorties on D-Day. Casualties among the ground forces were 2,500 killed and 8,500 wounded. The German response to the invasion was hampered greatly by Hitler's indecision and the fear that Normandy was just a feint with the real blow coming at the Pas de Calais region, a believe that the Allies had fostered among the German high command with clever deceptions.

01-31-2005, 04:39 PM
Very interesting interview woofiedog!

The German response was slow initially on D-Day, but by June 13 over 1000 aircraft were rushed in from Germany, Italy and the eastern front to counter the Allied advance. By the end of June however, the Allies had such a superiority in the air that most Luftwaffe units suffered depleted strength and serviceability. Five Jagdgruppen had to be withdrawn to Germany for re-fit after only ten days in Normandy. JG 26 for example, lost 67 pilots in combat from D-Day to August 31. By this time the Luftwaffe was for all intents and purposes a spent and exhausted force.

01-31-2005, 05:44 PM
More info here for those interested, with some pictures as well.


02-01-2005, 04:46 AM
JoachimvMayern... Excellent story!
And this photo will be great for placing Ships for setting up a D-Day Mission using the FMB.