Ju 88 with Hitler's Papers

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PF
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Ju 88 with Hitler's Papers

Post by PF » 22 Sep 2005 18:21

Ju 88 transport shot down with Hitler's Papers in 1945:
1) Shot down by flank or figther plane?
2) Who was the pilot?
3) Did a rear Gunner survive?
4) A SS Sgt Ardnt was killed ?

brustcan
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Re: Ju 88 with Hitler's Papers

Post by brustcan » 26 Sep 2005 07:14

PF wrote:Ju 88 transport shot down with Hitler's Papers in 1945:
1) Shot down by flank or figther plane?
2) Who was the pilot?
3) Did a rear Gunner survive?
4) A SS Sgt Ardnt was killed ?


Hello! On April 20, 1945 Sgt. Wilhelm Arndt (a wounded SS veteran twenty years old, who acted as one of Hitler's personal servants), along with one other soldier-valet named Fehrs, loaded ten trunks (metal containers), onto a truck. The trunks contained Hitler's personal property. Arndt dressed in full field uniform, and armed with a machine pistol, climbed in back of the truck with the trunks. The truck headed for Schönwalde airfield ten miles north of Berlin. Because of heavy attacks on Berlin, the Ju 352 did not take off until 5am morning of April 21. The pilot was Major Friedrich Gundlfinger, with Arndt, the trunks and 15 passengers. The Ju 352 had only been in the air for half an hour, when something went wrong. An Allied plane or even German Flak shot up the plane. It was seen just before 6am low over the tree tops, on fire. The large transport ploughed nose first into the ground, burning fiercely near Börnersdorf.
There were no survivors. By 8:30am the news was relayed to Hitler, who was very upset. He said in that plane were my private archives. Cheers brustcan

VtwinVince
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Post by VtwinVince » 27 Sep 2005 04:34

Sounds like that was the basis for the "discovery" of the infamous Hitler diaries. Perhaps they should have gotten Hanna Reitsch to try and make that flight.

Larry D.
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Post by Larry D. » 27 Sep 2005 13:32

brustcan wrote:

The truck headed for Schönwalde airfield ten miles north of Berlin. Because of heavy attacks on Berlin, the Ju 352 did not take off until 5am morning of April 21.


Your account is very interesting and one I had not heard before. It also appears in a somewhat different form in a book that I bought and read last year:

Bukowski, Helmut and Christel Trilus. Fliegerhorst Schönwalde/Berlin: Ausbildungs- und Erprobungsstätte der Luftwaffe 1935-1945. Wölfersheim-Berstadt: Podzun-Pallas Verlag, 1999. ISBN 3-7909-0675-1. 160p.

This is a pretty complete and well-researched history of Berlin-Schönwalde airfield, and here is what it has to say on page 147 about the events of 21 April (my translation):

The departure of members of the Reich government began in the morning hours of 21 April 1945. Along with other aircraft, two Ju 352s taxied out and took off from Schönwalde. Both were bound for Salzburg. While KT+VJ, full of members of the Foreign Office (Auswärtiges Amt), reached its destination, KT+VC crashed south of Dresden while attempting to make an emergency landing and completely burned out. The only survivor was the gunner (Bordschütze).

The other aircraft that had already reached their destinations were ordered to return immediately to Berlin. This included the Führer's baggage aircraft, Ju 52 NT+NL, that took off from Pocking en-route to Schönwalde. While flying low in the vicinity of Jüterbog due to the weather, the aircraft was fired on by enemy ground troops, caught fire and attempted an emergency landing. However it misjudged and none of the passengers survived.


Notice the subtle discrepencies between the two accounts. As for the pilot, here is a little more information. This is the correct spelling of his name taken directly from Luftwaffenpersonalamt records. His assignment to II./Ergänzungs-Transportgeschwader would place him in Berlin.

GUNDELFINGER, Friedrich-Anton. 05.40 Hptm., appt Staka 4./KGr.z.b.V. 106. 00.42 Hptm., Kdr. (acting?) KGr. z.b.V. 300 (to ?). 16.09.42 Hptm., appt Staka 1./KGr. z.b.V. 300 (to 15.02.43). 01.05.43 Hptm., appt Staka 1./Erg.TGr. (to 19.10.43). 15.06.43 Maj., appt Kdr. II./Erg.TG (to 09.08.43).

--Larry

brustcan
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Post by brustcan » 28 Sep 2005 05:05

Larry D. wrote:brustcan wrote:

The truck headed for Schönwalde airfield ten miles north of Berlin. Because of heavy attacks on Berlin, the Ju 352 did not take off until 5am morning of April 21.


Your account is very interesting and one I had not heard before. It also appears in a somewhat different form in a book that I bought and read last year:

Bukowski, Helmut and Christel Trilus. Fliegerhorst Schönwalde/Berlin: Ausbildungs- und Erprobungsstätte der Luftwaffe 1935-1945. Wölfersheim-Berstadt: Podzun-Pallas Verlag, 1999. ISBN 3-7909-0675-1. 160p.

This is a pretty complete and well-researched history of Berlin-Schönwalde airfield, and here is what it has to say on page 147 about the events of 21 April (my translation):

The departure of members of the Reich government began in the morning hours of 21 April 1945. Along with other aircraft, two Ju 352s taxied out and took off from Schönwalde. Both were bound for Salzburg. While KT+VJ, full of members of the Foreign Office (Auswärtiges Amt), reached its destination, KT+VC crashed south of Dresden while attempting to make an emergency landing and completely burned out. The only survivor was the gunner (Bordschütze).
--Larry


Hello! Here's more confusing info: from "The Bunker" by James P. O'Donnell...the tenth plane piloted by Major Friedrich Gundelfinger was somehow jinxed. Engine trouble delayed it an hour in Berlin. All other planes landed on schedule, although at least one of them had run into German flak at Nuremburg. All aboard had been killed instantly and their bodies burned. The search work was done by the Luftwaffe graves registration some years after the war.
...."Selling Hitler" by Robert Harris. Heidemann using notes he made from the garves at Boernersdorf, set about tracing the victims relatives. He found Frau Leni Fiebes, widow of Max Fiebes (one of Hitler's bodyguards),
who was a passenger. Frau Fiebes gave the name of the "rear gunner" Franz Westermeier. Heidemann tracked down Franz's family, and found the Franz survived the crash, thrown clear of the burning wreak, along with SS guard Gerhard Becker. Becker died of injuries two days later,
Franz died in April 1980.
.....my own opinion as to why the plane burned so fiercely, is the aircraft was a version of the Ju 252...using less raw materials Junkers built the Ju 352 with wooden wings, wood propellers etc. Also there was "no rear gunner" only a top turret behind the cockpit with a single 20mm cannon.
Cheers brustcan

Larry D.
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Post by Larry D. » 28 Sep 2005 13:21

Brustcan wrote:

Franz Westermeier. Heidemann tracked down Franz's family, and found the Franz survived the crash, thrown clear of the burning wreak, along with SS guard Gerhard Becker.


Interesting! I guess Franz Westermeier would be the source for the aircraft's cargo and the names of passengers. I don't think we are at the bottom of this yet. I have strong suspicions that too many cooks have been stirring the porridge down through the years. All of these different accounts suggests that someone will eventually have to go back to the original documents, if any exist, and the original statements made by Westermeier to find out what his Ju 352 was really carrying and exactly who was on board. The German account that's based on documents says the Führer's baggage plane was the Ju 52 and not the Ju 352. Since the Ju 52 had arrived safely at Pocking, where it certainly must have off-loading its cargo, it presumably was empty when it crashed on the return flight. Could it have been the Ju 52 and not the Ju 352 that was carrying the Führer's papers? This is typical of the many accounts we get that take place during the final couple of weeks of the war. They are fascinating - even exciting - but difficult to confirm!

--Larry

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leodienasty
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Hitlers Tagebücher

Post by leodienasty » 15 Nov 2010 21:44

VtwinVince wrote:Sounds like that was the basis for the "discovery" of the infamous Hitler diaries. Perhaps they should have gotten Hanna Reitsch to try and make that flight.


Did someone mention the discovery of the Hitler diaries. <Hitler-Tagebücher>

All I can say is Google did help!

http://www.undergroundumbrella.co.uk/st ... iaries.htm

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