Was Franz von Werra the only pilot to escape back to Germany

Discussions on all (non-biographical) aspects of the Luftwaffe air units and general discussions on the Luftwaffe.
brustcan
Member
Posts: 276
Joined: 30 Mar 2004 04:38
Location: canada

Was Franz von Werra the only pilot to escape back to Germany

Post by brustcan » 22 May 2004 18:47

In the book, and the 1958 movie, "The One That Got Away" told the story
of how LT Franz von Werra of II./JG3 was shot down over England in 1940, and eventually made it back to Germany. Was he the only one?
Thanks brustcan

User avatar
redcoat
Member
Posts: 1361
Joined: 03 Mar 2003 21:54
Location: Stockport, England

Re: Was Franz von Werra the only pilot to escape back to Ger

Post by redcoat » 23 May 2004 00:56

brustcan wrote: Was he the only one?
Thanks brustcan
Yes :wink:

User avatar
Dieter Zinke
In memoriam
Posts: 9839
Joined: 02 Dec 2003 09:12
Location: Koblenz / germany

Post by Dieter Zinke » 24 May 2004 10:23

Here are some interesting pics of Franz von Werra.
The pic of his wedding shows probably also the Kommodore JG 53, Major von Maltzahn.
Another pic shows his Me after the crash.

Oberstab
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.

brustcan
Member
Posts: 276
Joined: 30 Mar 2004 04:38
Location: canada

Post by brustcan » 24 May 2004 20:58

Oberstab wrote:Here are some interesting pics of Franz von Werra.
The pic of his wedding shows probably also the Kommodore JG 53, Major von Maltzahn.
Another pic shows his Me after the crash.

Oberstab
Thanks for that interesting wedding picture. cheers brustcan

Phil
Member
Posts: 130
Joined: 24 Jun 2002 23:36
Location: UK

Post by Phil » 25 May 2004 13:34

Franz von Werra was the only POW to escape during wartime from British/Canadian custody however some POW's escsaped post war such as Luftwaffe Paratrooper Alexander Uhlig. He escaped from a POW camp on 22 A pril 1947. He stowed away on a ship in from Hull to Cuxhaven. Three days later he had reached Germany and by 28 April he had reached his home town of Leipzig in the Russian sector.

The remains of Von Werra's escape tunnel still remain at the former POW camp in Swanwick, Derbyshire, England. I have actually stayed in the old block the POW's were kept in, before it was nocked down a couple of years ago, due to the building having no fire escapes etc, as the whole estate is now a conffrence centre.

Regards
Phil

brustcan
Member
Posts: 276
Joined: 30 Mar 2004 04:38
Location: canada

Post by brustcan » 27 May 2004 20:54

Phil wrote:Franz von Werra was the only POW to escape during wartime from British/Canadian custody however some POW's escsaped post war such as Luftwaffe Paratrooper Alexander Uhlig. He escaped from a POW camp on 22 A pril 1947. He stowed away on a ship in from Hull to Cuxhaven. Three days later he had reached Germany and by 28 April he had reached his home town of Leipzig in the Russian sector.

The remains of Von Werra's escape tunnel still remain at the former POW camp in Swanwick, Derbyshire, England. I have actually stayed in the old block the POW's were kept in, before it was nocked down a couple of years ago, due to the building having no fire escapes etc, as the whole estate is now a conffrence centre.

Regards
Phil
Saw a documentary film on TV about the camp and tunnel at Swanwick. Just amazing that it is still there after all these years. Just a quick note, one of the reasons that von Werra was shipped off to Canada, was that British RAF intelligence were aware the von Werra was just not another shot down German pilot. He was keeping track of how the whole RAF
interrogation system operated. When von Werra escaped from Canada to
the USA, the Canadian Goverment asked that he be returned. Before papers could be served in New York, von Werra fled to Mexico with the help of the German Embassy. On his return to Germany, he informed the Luftwaffe that their code was broken, that all squadron unit numbers were
known, that the RAF knew the Luftwaffe Field Post numbers(so knew where a unit was stationed), and how the RAF gathered seemly harmless
information from German pilots. As a result the Luftwaffe with von Werra's help set up a similiar RAF type system called Dulag Luft outside of Frankfurt, at Oberuersel. All pilots no matter where they were shot down or
captured went to this place, then to a POW camp. Cheers brustcan

Return to “Luftwaffe air units and Luftwaffe in general”