Flak gunner Aces?

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divHUNYADI
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Flak gunner Aces?

Post by divHUNYADI » 23 Dec 2007 03:22

Curious about the amount written on Pilots,Tankers,Seamen Aces etc... Does anyone have any info on any Axis Flak gunner aces?... Stationary flak or mechanized?. I'm sure that their are AA gunners that shot down mulitple aircraft during the war, (I'm not looking for the converted anti-tank role).

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Post by ChristopherPerrien » 23 Dec 2007 05:10

There were some aircrew gunners credited with shooting down multiple enemy planes.

As to ground based anti-craft fire , there are some machine gunners credited with shooting down more than one airplane, but I have never heard of one shooting down five or more . I think there probably are many credited with 5+.

Large crew served weapons(i.e.Cannons) work differently. I have seen pictures of German AA guns(88mms) with many "kill rings", however the crew of such AA guns were quite large and the firing/accuracy of any one gun was dependant upon many people who were not assigned to a particular gun but to a whole battery of such guns as spotters, range takers, radar operators, etc. So no one person, or even a gun crew of heavy AA gun can really be called Aces without a fair amount of ambiguity involved. I don't recall how the crews of these guns were awarded kills or how any kill was recognized as being attributed to a single gun.

Even a Bofors 40mm took 4 or 5 people to aim (IIRC), in manual mode, and more were invovled if it was radar directed.

Chris

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divHUNYADI
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Post by divHUNYADI » 23 Dec 2007 05:48

Now that makes a little bit more sense. I served as a 11-hotel (heavy anti-armor spec.(Tow/mk-19/m2) in the 101st ABN. But I was wondering if maybe their was Wirbelwind,ostwing,moebelwagon crews that kept their crew integrity and amassed some success?... I recall during my studies back in Queens college ,about a book by Bender,"Blood and honour" about a AA crew shooting down multiple brits at Falaise pocket(think it was more or less a couple of pages about this?.). And now I have no choice but to blow the dust of the bookshelf and find that dame passage to make sure I'm not going crazy.

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Post by Jan-Hendrik » 30 Dec 2007 09:01

There are some interesting accounts in Hans Stöber's Die Flugabwehrverbände der Waffen-SS and in Hermann Freter's Fla nach vorn!

Both works can be seen as the Standard for the Fla in the role of direct troop support 8-)

For example the 3rd Kp. of Fla-Btl.55 was credited for 32 shotdowns in 18 days during Fall Gelb, plus 10 shotdowns which were not credited. The most successfull crew of this Kp., which was lead by Hauptmann Tremmel, was credited with 6 shotdowns.

Source: Vol. 1 of the Freter, pages 179- 184

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Doktor Krollspell
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Post by Doktor Krollspell » 08 Jan 2008 20:22

Hello Gentlemen!

Here's one Kriegsmarine Flak Ace, Karl Jörß, that recieved the RK on 17.02.1943 as a Bootsmannsmaat and Flakleiter on the transport ship "Dora". He shot down 12 enemy airplanes (witnessed scores) while sailing the Mediterranean...

Karl Jörß
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Der Führer verlieh auf Vorschlag des Oberbefehlhabers der Kriegsmarine, Großadmiral Dönitz, das Ritterkreuz des Eisernen Kreuzes am Bootsmannsmaat Karl Jörss. Bootsmannsmaat Jörss war zunächst Geschützführer und später Flakführer auf verschiedenen Transportern im Mittelmeer. Bei der Abwehr zahlreicher Luftangriffe zeichnete er sich besonderes aus. Es gelang ihm durch geschickte Feuerleitung, sämtliche Angriffe abzuwehren, die Schiffe und ihre Ladungen vor ihrer Vernichtung zu retten, wobei er noch 12 beobachtete Abschüsse erzielte- Diese Leistung ist überragend, gemessen an den ganz besonders schwierigen Verhältnissen im Mittelmeer. 23/2-43.


Source photo & quote: http://presentations.uib.no/pls/portal/ ... _PART.show


Btw, shouldn't this thread be placed in the "Luftwaffe ground forces" section or in the "Biographies" section? Just my two cents...

And while I'm at it, what do I have to do to get the little black symbol for showing that a thread contains pictorial information? Everytime I post photographs in a thread this symbol never shows up until other members post photographs in the same thread? Just curious...


Regards,

Krollspell

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Pax Melmacia
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Post by Pax Melmacia » 09 Jan 2008 03:37

I heard that some Flak units awarded kill rings based on the individual crew, while others based it on the entire unit's performance, which would explain guns with a lot of rings. Also, let's not forget that the Germans used their flak guns against ground targets, which have unique kill markings.

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Post by ChristopherPerrien » 09 Jan 2008 04:15

Hey Krollspell,

Do you know what kind of gun he operated/controlled? And/or his crew position on this gun(s)?


Chris

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Post by Doktor Krollspell » 09 Jan 2008 07:15

For Pax et al.

Here's a photograph and quote that illustrates the different ways of marking shot down airplanes vs. knocked out tanks that you describe, The Ritterkreuzträger is Johann Muhr, who recieved the RK on 22.11.1943 as a Leutnant (Kr.O.) and Führer 5./gem. Flak.Abt. 505 (v) and Führer Flak-Panzerzug (beh.) der 9. Flak-Div.

Johann Muhr
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Das ist Leutnant Muhr, der am Tartarengraben an der Landenge von Perekop kämpfte, und sich das E.K. I und sogar das Ritterkreuz holte. Die Ringe am Rohr seines Flakgeschützes erzählen von abgeschossenen Feindflugzeugen, während die Silhouetten abgeschossener Panzer am Schutzschild davon zeugen, dass das Geschütz auch im Erdkampf hervorragendes leistete. 3/1-44.

Source photo and quote: http://presentations.uib.no/pls/portal/ ... _PART.show


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Krollspell

Doktor Krollspell
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Post by Doktor Krollspell » 09 Jan 2008 07:22

Hello Chris!

I don't know what kind of AA-gun it was that Karl Jörß operated on the transport ship "Dora" but an educated guess would be that the "Dora" was equipped with 2 cm Flak 38 (single or "Vierling") or maybe the 3,7 cm Flak (18, 36, 37 or 42). I doubt that a transport ship would have had any heavier AA-guns (5 cm - 8,8 cm) but as I said, just an educated guess...


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Krollspell

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Post by Doktor Krollspell » 09 Jan 2008 18:50

Hello again Gentlemen!

In Karl Ullrich's "Wie ein Fels im Meer - 3. SS-Panzerdivision "Totenkopf" im Bild" (1984) there's a photograph of a Flak crew of 7 soldiers in front of what seems to be a 3,7 cm Flak and the text says that this was...
Die erfolgreichste Flakbatterie im Osten. Die 2. (später 4.) (Sfl) Batterie SS-Flakabteilung 3 der 3. SS-Panzer-Division "Totenkopf" schoß 172 sowjetische Flugzeuge ab.

The most successful AA battery in the east. The 2nd (later 4th) (Heavy) AA Battery SS AA Battalion 3 of 3rd SS Panzer Division "Totenkopf" shot down 172 Soviet aircraft.

Source: Ullrich (1984).

Does anyone have any similar numbers for other Flak crew, batteries or battalions in the Wehrmacht and the Waffen-SS?

As a footnote there were four (4) members of the 2. and the 4. Batterie of the SS-Flak-Abteilung 3 that where awarded with the DKiG.


Regards,

Krollspell

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Post by Simon Orchard » 29 Jan 2008 20:23

Doktor Krollspell wrote:Hello Chris!

I don't know what kind of AA-gun it was that Karl Jörß operated on the transport ship "Dora" but an educated guess would be that the "Dora" was equipped with 2 cm Flak 38 (single or "Vierling") or maybe the 3,7 cm Flak (18, 36, 37 or 42). I doubt that a transport ship would have had any heavier AA-guns (5 cm - 8,8 cm) but as I said, just an educated guess...


Regards,

Krollspell


Photos of him on another merchant ship in Biblio-Verlag's 'Die Ritterkreuzträger' show various 2 cm combinations, single, Vierling and even a Drilling.

an interesting subject (to me anyway as i'm an ex-flak gunner) that i believe hasn't had much attention paid to it. To find an individual you could sort of equate with 'ace' status i guess means looking at the NCO RKT of flak units like Jörss. Officers led units and not individual guns so they would have been decorated for their leadership and their units successes. NCOs on the other hand could command an individual gun and any decorated for shooting down aircraft are no different to the likes of panzer commander aces.

Which reminds me, i really need to get the two volumes on flak RKT

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LWD
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Post by LWD » 29 Jan 2008 21:09

How could you tell which gun shot down a plane when a large battery of heavy AA was firing?

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Post by tarzan50 » 31 Jan 2008 13:15

I know for sure that my father Mirko Pešut as a young gefreiter, and a member of FLAK unit which comprised Croatians shot down an american bomber somewhere above Germany, according to a story he told me.Iam sure he would have answered you correctly .It was a very precise weapon and my father got once a 7 day leave as an excellent marksman in the German Alps. I am trying to track down his military history since 1943 when he was drafted in Luftwaffe and stayed there unitil he was captured by the British forces at Hamburg in 1945. He was trained as many Croats in Wiener Neustadt and transfered to a 8,8 cm Schwere FLAK unit.He was born in 1925 i Brodski Stupnik near Slavonski Brod and he died in 1987. He did not tell me a lot since we lived in the communist state of Yugoslavia where one was not supposed to speak openly of those days of collaboration with the Germans. Some of his friends ended in Eastern front and fought at Stalingrad. I do not know much of his war days except that he spent 2 years in West Germany from 1943 to 1945. When he visited Germany in the early seventies some of his superiors were still alive and well.For a brief period he was a guard at a POW camp for Russians somwhere in West Germany. If anyone knew my father or has some information concerning him please let me know. You can contact me thru my e-mail tarzan50@net.hr

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Re: Flak gunner Aces?

Post by Edward L. Hsiao » 18 Mar 2015 08:14

Gentlemen,

A very interesting topic indeed! I would have known that a crew of a flak battery both stationary and mobile would had a very time shooting against U.S. and British fighter bombers in Normandy and other parts of the Western Europe.

Sincerely,

Edward L. Hsiao

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Re: Flak gunner Aces?

Post by Edward L. Hsiao » 12 Jul 2019 22:54

Losses among flak crews particularly the aces must have been high when dealing with low flying enemy fighter bombers in the Western Front in 1944-1945.
Fritz Petersen was a successful Luftwaffe NCO flak leader with victory credits against Soviet planes and tanks during WWII. He was a holder of the Knight's Cross with Oak Leaves.

Edward L. Hsiao

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