Aufkl. Gr. 123 1941

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Jan 1941 - 2(F)/123 Ju 88Ds ordered transferred from Norway with Fliegerkorps X to Sicily.[1]

04 Jan 1941 - Aircraft from 2(F)./123, sortie to Bristol & Avonmouth. Over Bristol 13.01 hrs and 14.25 hrs Unfortunately, did not return with any credible photographs due to a low cloud base over the target.[2]

08 Jan 1941 – A single Ju 88 from 1(F)./123, took off at 11.10 hrs on a sortie to photograph Bristol & Avonmouth. Flew past Bristol area 14.38 - 15.03 hrs. The sortie was aborted due to extensive cloud cover.[2]

10 Jan 1941 – 2(F)./123 sent a Ju 88, which took off at 10.40 hrs on a mission to Bristol, aborted due to cloud cover.[2]

10 Jan 1941 – One Ju 88 from 3(F)./123, took off at 13.16 hrs on post raid photo mission to Bristol, Avonmouth, & Weston super Mare, was over Bristol between 16.15 - 16.50 hrs.[2]

28 Jan 1941 – 2(F)./123, single sortie to Avonmouth. This was aborted due to fighter attack before the target area was reached.[2]

11 Feb 1941 – 2(F)./123 aircraft sent to look at Avonmouth & Swansea.[2]

13 Feb 1941 – An aircraft from 2(F)./123 sent on a sortie to Avonmouth & Swansea.[2]

23 Feb 1941 - A number of 2(F)./123 aircraft were still transfering to Sicily.


Date Unit Aircraft Type Code Wkr.No. Notes
23 Feb 1941 2(F)./ 123 Do 17 P 4039 Crashed near Bologna during transfer flight. 4 killed: Uffz Heinz Prause (F), Ofw Gerhard Dorp (B), FW Herbert Meinecke (Bf) and Ogfr Hans Reymann (Bm).[3]
23 Feb 1941 2(F)./ 123 Ju 88A-5 4U+GK 880356 Crashed (Italy?) during transfer flight. 4 killed: Ofw Heinrich Bats (F), Oblt Hans Zuleeg (B), Ofw Hans Behrens and Uffz Heinrich Kolberg (Bm).[4]

25 Feb 1941 - 2(F)/123 flew sorties to Malta and 40 4039 39 lost an Me 110 in the area around St Pauls Bay, Malta -Fw.Karl Bernhard(F) and and his gunner reported as missing. Probably shot down by Hurricanes.[5]

16 Mar 1941 – 3(F)./123 operational under Flg.F. Atlantik.[6]

2 Apr 1941 - 2(F)./123 had a Ju 88 damaged by AA fire near Suda Bay (Crete), the crew were unhurt.

3 Apr 1941 - 3(F)./123 at 14.46 hrs despatched Ju 88 4U+HL on a sortie to Ireland, the Bristol Channel and the Scilly Isles returning to brest at 18.20 hrs.[7]

6 Apr 1941 - Commencement of Unternehmen Marita, the German invasion of Greece. At 1500 a Ju88D (4U+EK) of 2(F)/123, on a sortie to Athens, was intercepted by an RAF Hurricane of 80 Sqdn. The Ju 88 attempted to escape over the Gulf of Corinth but was shot down into the sea off Patras.[8] Uffz Fritz Dreyer (F) was killed, while Fw Heinz Windrath (Bf) and Gefr Hans Hell (Bm) both survived the crash but died in a Greek hospital on April 11, Lt Edgar Liesenborghs (B) was captured wounded and was eventually liberated.[9]

7 Apr 1941 - 2(F)./123 Ju 88D (4U+FK)attacked over Tobruk harbour by Hurricane of 73 Sqdn flown by Sgt K. Souter (V7553/TP-E). The Hurricane expended all its ammunition during this attack although it could report no tangible results. However, the Ju 88 was badly damaged an eventually crashed in the sea off Bardia with the loss of Obfw. Werner Reinicke and the rest of the crew.[10]


Date Unit Aircraft Type Code Wkr.No. Notes
7 Apr 1941 2(F)./123 Ju 88D-1 4U + FK 880491 Lost following combat with Hurricanes of 73 Sqdn. Ofw Werner Reinicke (F), Obit Otto Bergmann (B), Uffz Jacob Kuhnen (Bf) and Oberarzt Friedrich-Wilhelm Föge (Bm) all killed.[11]

9 Apr 1941 – 2(F)./123 photographed the allied shipping in the Gulf of Eleusis from 7500m.[11]

11 Apr 1941 - 2(F)./123 sent out a sortie to Malta covering Valetta Harbour and the Malta airfields[12] loosing an Me 110C (4U+ZK) 40 km from Gozo Lt Johann Scharringhausen (F) and his gunner were recorded as missing.[13]


Date Unit Aircraft Type Code Wkr.No. Notes
11 Apr 1941 2(F)./ 123 Bf 110C-5 4U+ZK 2307 100% destroyed.

Crew, Lt. Alfred Scharringhausen (F) I disappeared: Fw Hans Heinz Ge-feke (Bf) both recorded as missing.[14]

13 Apr 1941 – At 12.52 hrs 3(F)./123 sent out Ju 88 4U+HL (Ltn.Schneider) flew to Ireland and then up the Bristol Channel attacking a large tanker, returning to Brest at 17.10 hrs.[15]

24 Apr 1941 - 3(F)./123 (operating under the control of Luftflotte 3) has a Bf 110C-5 (Wk Nr. crash land at Brest-Süd and suffer 80% damage although no crew injuries were reported.[16]

30 Apr 1941 - "Marita" ends.

6 May 1941 - A Ju 88 of 2(F)/123 was attacked, off Cap Pesaro, by Fulmars from two sections of 806 Sqdn flying off HMS Formidable. The damaged aircraft regained Catania with two of it's crew wounded.[17]

7 May 1941 - 1./123 sent out a Ju 88A-5(f) on a sortie to Glasgow, presumably to obtain post raid pictures of the damage at Greenock, Dumbarton and Glasgow following the raids by 232 aircraft of Luftflottes 2 and 3.[18]


Date Unit Aircraft Type Code Wkr.No. Notes
7 May 1941 1(F)./123 Ju 88A-5(f) 4U+KH 444 100% destroyed, the crew killed.

Fw. Johannes Hauburg (F), Ofw. leo Knoch (B), Fw Georg Knappe (Bf) and Uffz. Karl Hofmann (Bm).[19]

9 May 1941 - 2(F)./123 sorties to the west of Malta.[20] 2(F)./123 lost a Ju 88 (4U+LK) between Lampedusa and Malta to a 252 Sqdn Beaufighter. Ju 88 was probably part of the recce force deployed to find convoy “Tiger”.[21]

10 May 1941 - 2(F)./123 sorties to the west of Malta.[22] </sup>A Ju 88 of 2(F)./123 was damaged in combat with two Beaufighters. The Ju88 returned with one crew member wounded (Fw. Helmut Zieslack[23]). One Beaufighter failed to return to Malta, this was probably lost to the return fire from the Ju 88.[24]

20 May 1941 - commencement of "Merkur", the invasion of Crete.

28 May 1941 - A Ju 88 of 2(F)/123 was shot down over Crete by aircraft of 14 Sqdn RAF, the Ju 88 was destroyed. Lt Fritz Gortan (B) and Gefr Heinrich Matthias (BM) were both killed while Uffz Herbert Nispel (F) and Uffz Jozef Lindorfer (Bf) were both taken prisoner.[25]

29 May 1941 - A Ju 88 of 2(F)./123, flying at 13,000ft was attacked by a Maryland and Hurricanes operating to protect “Force B” warships returning to Alexandria. The Maryland attacked and damaged the Ju 88 as it dived away. Flg Off Tracy in Hurricane V7830 shot the Ju 88, coded 4U+EK (Wkr Nr 880802), into the sea and the crew, of Fw Ernst Chlebowitz (F), Ofw Hugo Rolfes (B), Ofw Hans Haydn (Bf) and Uffz karl-heinz Holste (BM)[26] were all killed.[27][28]

10 Jun 1941 - 2(F)/123 sortie to Alexandria Harbour.[29]

3(F)./123 operational under Flg.F. Atlantik.[30]

Date Unit Aircraft Type Code Wkr.No. Notes
10 Jun 1941 2(F)./123 Ju 88A-5 4U+AK 0661 Shot down by Tomahawks of 250 Sqdn near Alexandria last seen at sea level with black smoke coming from both engines. Uffz Albert Schwarz (F), Oblt Richard Kern (B) and two others KIA).[31]

12 Jul 1941 - 2(F)/123 sortie to Alexandria Harbour.[29]

8 Aug 1941 - 1(F)./123 sent a Bf 110 on a sortie to Hull.


Date Unit Aircraft Type Code Wkr.No. Notes
08 Aug 1941 1(F)./123 Bf 110C-5 4U+XH 2306 Aircraft and crew missing.

Oblt. Friedrich Mende (F) and Fw. Martin Pietras (Bf) later recorded as being killed.[32]

31 Aug 1941 - 3(F)./123 sent out a lone sortie to the approaches of the Bristol and St Georges Channels. The aircraft took off about 1330 and landed at Morlaix at 1730.[33]

4 Sep 1941 - 3(F)./123 sent out a single aircraft to the sea area north of Sheringham. This aircraft may have flown as far north as Tynemouth.[34]

6 Sep 1941 - 1(F)./123 single aircraft despatched, the sortie was broken off about 35kms south of Carnsore Point on sighting three enemy fighters, and additionally due to adverse weather conditions. Two Hurricanes patrolling off the south coast of Eire reported that at 1040 an Fw 200 approached convoy (probably SL84) at 500ft then climbed into clouds and was lost. This aircraft was probably not an Fw but the aircraft of 1./123 engaged on this operation. Visibility was bad at the time and the aircraft probably did not sight the convoy at all. The aircraft returned over Brest to Orly and landed at 1424.[35]

3(F)./123 sent out a single sortie probably to the approaches to St Georges Channel. This aircraft was possibly in the vicinity of the homeward bound convoy SL84 off the South coast of Eire, additionally this may have sighted convoy Warrant at 1512 off St Ives.[35]

3(F)./123 sent a single aircraft to the East Anglian coast – Spurn head – Flamborough head area.Probably shadowed convoys FS96 off Spurn Head and EC 75 off Flamborough Head. Also reported shipping off East Anglian Coast. Over given area between 1315 – 1430.[35]

7 Sep 1941 – 3(F)./123, single aircraft despatched to cover the coast of East Anglia, Lincolnshire and Yorkshire, operating as far north as the Middlesborough – Tyne area. Landed at 1618 hrs.[35]

9 Sep 1941 – 1(F)./123, repositioning flight from Paris/Orly to Brest, landing at 0740 hrs. This aircraft then flew a reconnaissance sortie, landing back at Brest at 1535 hrs. The aircraft took off again at around 1800 hrs. 3(F)./123 – single aircraft sortie to the Yorkshire and Lincshire coasts. Possibly made what was alleged by the ship attacked to be an attack “with torpedo and gunfire” on SS Albert C. Field off Flamboro Head. Operated from and returned to Schiphol before 1344 – 1547 hrs.[35]

10 Sep 1941 – 3(F)./123 - Single aircraft reconnaissance along East Coast as far north as Tyne-Berwick area. Reached limit of endurance at 1415 hrs.[35]

11 Sep 1941 – 3(F)./123 sent out two sorties to the East Coast of England as far as 54-55N. Operated from and returned to Schiphol by 1613 hrs.[35]

12 Sep 1941 – 1(F)./123 - one aircraft broke off operations (possibly due to technical defect) at 0908 hrs. Told to land at Morlaix on account of bad landing conditions at Brest.[35]

3(F)./123 sent out a single sortie probably to the East Coast of England. May have been sighted by Vimiera in position 53.20N 01.01E. Took off before 0750 hrs.[35]

Another aircraft also probably despatched to the East Anglian/East Coast of England. Shadowed on convoy in 52.04N 01.48E and another in 53.52N 00.26E. On return may have flown inland near N Coates to Lincoln, Kings Lynn and out at Southwold.[35]

13 Sep 1941 – 1(F)./123, a single aircraft landed at Morlaix at 1505 hrs and took off again for Paris.[35]

3(F)./123 despatched one aircraft to the East Coast of England, operating to about 55N. This aircraft reported convoys (probably FS93 and FN 17) in the Spurn Head and Whitby areas. had landed by 1441 hrs.[35]

14 Sep 1941 – 1(F)./123 sent out at least one sortie this day. 3(F)./123 sent 4U+SL along the Western Approaches this aircraft landed at 1732 hrs. 4U+LL was also sent out to the East coast of England and operated as far north as the Tyne-Berwick area. The crew probably sighted convoy FN 18 at 1348 hrs and convoy FS 94 at 1355 hrs off Flamborough Head. Landed at 1440 hrs.[35]

15 Sep 1941 – 4U+IL of 3(F)./123 on patrol but sighted nothing, landed at 1525 hrs.[35]

16 Sep 1941 – 1(F)./123, an aircraft of this unit landed at Morlaix at 0830 hrs, and another took off at 1044 hrs. One sortie probably made along the French coast. 4U+NH approached Lands End-Scillies area at 1856 hrs, before it turned back.[35]

3(F)./123 sent out a sortie to the East Coast of England as far north as the Tyne area. The crew sighted convoy FN 19 at 1145 hrs in position 52.07N 01.53E.[35]

17 Sep 1941 - 4U+NH of 1(F)./123 took off at 0823 hrs to the south coast of England and turned back at 1020 hrs, landing at Buc at 1125 hrs.

3(F)./123 sent one aircraft to East Anglia, operating possibly as far north as the Humber from 1133-1216 hrs.[35]

18 Sep 1941 - 4U+FL of 3(F)./123 operated off the east coast of England between Lowestoft and 55N. Sighted convoys FS 97 and FN 20. The aircraft was engaged by HMS Westminster, which claimed erroneously that the aircraft was shot down. Landed at 1430. Convoy FN was subsequently attacked around 2000hrs by aircraft from KGr 606 (and possible 3.(F)/122).[36]

4U+SL from the same unit was also operational in an undisclosed area.[37]

19 Sep 1941 - 3(F)./123s 4U+LL may have been the aircraft that shadowed HMS Eglinton off Lowestoft around 1140hrs.[38]

20 Sep 1941 - 3(F)./123 sent a single aircraft to the East Anglian Coast and East Coast as far north as Middlesbrough. This aircraft reported sightings of convoys FS 99, EC 75 and FN 21 (FS 99 was later attacked by KG 606) The aircraft was over the target area between 1147 – 1310hrs.[39]

22 Sep 1941 - 3(F)./123 despatched 4U+FL to the English East Coast between the Wash and Newcastle. The aircraft claimed to have sighted convoy FS 1 at 1255 hrs. (The convoy reported an unidentified aircraft at 1303 in 54°56’N 00°40’W, this was possibly this aircraft.) This convoy later attacked by III./KG 30. 4U+FL landed c.1630.[40]

24 Sep 1941 - 3(F)./123 sent out a single aircraft, this probably approached either the Bristol or St George’s Channel. returned and landed about 1440 hrs. [41]

25 Sep 1941 - 3(F)./123 sent one aircraft to the East coast of England to Tyne – Berwick area. Probably sighted nothing.[42]

26 Sep 1941 - 3(F)./123 sent a single aircraft to the East Anglian coast-East Coast. Sighted convoy activity (may have been FN 23?) in the vicinity of Spurn Head and another convoy escorted by HMS Viniera off Scarborough.[43]

27 Sep 1941 - 4U+PL from 3(F)./123 operated off the East Coast of England, possibly as far north as Tyne area. May have shadowed convoy EC 78 in Flamborough Head area.[44]

30 Sep 1941 - 3(F)./123 sent out F6+PL on an operational sortie, it had landed by 2230 at Eindhoven.[45]

01 Oct 1941 - 3(F)./123 sent 4U+FL to the English East Coast as far north as the Tyne-Berwick area.[46]

02 Oct 1941 - 3(F)./123 despatched 4U+FL to the east coast of England between the Wash and Tyne-Berwick. The aircraft landed at 1440.[47]

03 Oct 1941 - 3(F)./123 sent 4U+SL on a sortie, possibly in the area of the Scillies. 4U+FL, from the same staffel, was sent to the East Anglian coast and to sortie up the east coast of England as far north as the Tyne-Berwick area. This aircraft sighted a convoy north of Cromer, this was probably EC 81 (which was later attacked by KGr 606).[48]

04 Oct 1941 - 3(F)./123 sent 4U+LL on operations to the Western Approaches as far as St George’s Channel.[49]

05 Oct 1941 - 3(F)./123 sent a single aircraft on a recce sortie over the Western Approaches from before 1300 – c.1600.[50]

4U+PL from the same staffel took-off before 1100 for a weather sortie of the English east coast between Yarmouth and Sunderland. This aircraft may have been the one unsuccessfully engaged by two Hurricanes 30m NE of Happisburgh between 1125 and 1230. The aircraft had landed safely by 1500 hrs.[51]

25 Oct 1941 - 2(F)/123 sortie to Alexandria.[29]

1 Dec 1941 – 2(F)./123 lost a Ju 88 on a morning sortie to intercepting Tomahawks of 3 Sqdn RAAF.

Date Unit Aircraft Type Code Wkr.No. Notes
1 Dec 1941 2(F)./123 Ju 88 4U+JK 1541 Shot down by Tomahawks of 3 Sqdn RAAF 30 miles south-east of Fort Maddalena. Lt Franz-Heinrich von Gablenz and one other POW, third crew member KIA.[52]

9 Dec 1941 – 2(F)./123 lost a Ju88A-5 to Tomahawks of 2 Sqdn SAAF over Bir el Gubi while on a morning sortie.

Date Unit Aircraft Type Code Wkr.No. Notes
9 Dec 1941 2(F)./123 Ju 88A-5 4U+FK 0523 Shot down by Tomahawks of 3 Sqdn RAAF 30 miles south-east of Fort Maddalena. Lt Franz-Heinrich von Gablenz and one other POW, third crew member KIA.[53]

14 Dec 1941 – 2(F)123 celebrated the unit's 1000th combat sortie.[54]

30 Dec 1941 – 2(F)./123 lost a Ju 88D-1 to 4 Sqdn SAAF.

Date Unit Aircraft Type Code Wkr.No. Notes
30 Dec 1941 2(F)./123 Ju 88D-1 4U+HK 1529 Shot down by Tomahawks of 4 Sqdn SAAF near Msus. Lt Karl-Heinz Renner and two others were KIA. Two other crew members bailed out – one of theses was made into a POW and the other evaded returning to his unit[55]

31 Dec 1941 - 2(F)./123 lost a Ju 88 to 274 Sqdn RAF (apparently shot down by Sgt James Dodds)[56]


Links

Aufklärungsgruppe 123

Aufkl. Gr. 123 1939

Aufkl. Gr. 123 1940

Aufkl. Gr. 123 1942

Aufkl. Gr. 123 1943

Aufkl. Gr. 123 1944

Aufkl. Gr. 123 1945

Michael Holm's Luftwaffe 1939-45

References

  1. Malta – The Hurricane Years 1940-41 - Chris Shores et al. - p106
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 http://fishponds.org.uk/luftbri8.html
  3. Avions 108-110
  4. Avions 108-110
  5. Malta – The Hurricane Years 1940-41 - Chris Shores et al. - p158
  6. T1022 R3336 PG80327 frame 600
  7. Gastanger/von Well – The Easter Bunnies
  8. Air War for Yugoslavia, Greece and Crete 1940-41 p232
  9. Avions 108-110
  10. “Hurricanes over Tobruk” - Brian Cull and Don Minterne p97
  11. 11.0 11.1 Avions 108-110
  12. Kampforte (1st Verlustmeldungen) Offiziers Stellenbesetzung Aufkl.Gr. 123
  13. Malta – The Hurricane Years 1940-41 - Chris Shores et al. - p183
  14. Avions 108 - 110
  15. Gastanger/von Well – The Easter Bunnies
  16. Luftwaffe Quartermaster Loss Returns 27 Apr 1941
  17. Air War for Yugoslavia, Greece and Crete 1940-41p317
  18. The Blitz then and Now v2 p590 for details of the raids.
  19. Luftwaffe Quartermaster Loss Returns 9 May 1941
  20. Kampforte (1st Verlustmeldungen) Offiziers Stellenbesetzung Aufkl.Gr. 123
  21. Malta – The Hurricane Years 1940-41 - Chris Shores et al. - p202
  22. Kampforte (1st Verlustmeldungen) Offiziers Stellenbesetzung Aufkl.Gr. 123
  23. Luftwaffe Quartermaster Loss Returns 16 May 1941
  24. Malta – The Hurricane Years 1940-41 - Chris Shores et al. - p203
  25. Avions 108 - 110
  26. Avions 108-110 – crew details
  27. Air War for Yugoslavia, Greece and Crete 1940-41 p394
  28. “Hurricanes over Tobruk” - Brian Cull and Don Minterne p 162
  29. 29.0 29.1 29.2 Kampforte (1st Verlustmeldungen) Offiziers Stellenbesetzung Aufkl.Gr. 123
  30. T1022 R3336 PG80327 frame 608
  31. Shores et al – Mediterranean Air War 1940-45 vol1 p 357/358
  32. Luftwaffe Quartermaster Loss Returns 10Aug 1941
  33. HW13/96 via Adam Thompson
  34. HW13/96 via Adam Thompson
  35. 35.00 35.01 35.02 35.03 35.04 35.05 35.06 35.07 35.08 35.09 35.10 35.11 35.12 35.13 35.14 35.15 35.16 HW13/96 via Adam Thompson
  36. HW13/96 via Adam Thompson/posted to the Luftwaffedata Forum 21 June 2010.
  37. HW13/96 via Adam Thompson/posted to the Luftwaffedata Forum 21 June 2010.
  38. HW13/96 via Adam Thompson/posted to the Luftwaffedata Forum 21 June 2010.
  39. HW13/96 via Adam Thompson/posted to the Luftwaffedata Forum 21 June 2010.
  40. HW13/96 via Adam Thompson/posted to the Luftwaffedata Forum 21 June 2010.
  41. HW13/96 via Adam Thompson/posted to the Luftwaffedata Forum 21 June 2010.
  42. HW13/96 via Adam Thompson/posted to the Luftwaffedata Forum 21 June 2010.
  43. HW13/96 via Adam Thompson/posted to the Luftwaffedata Forum 21 June 2010.
  44. HW13/96 via Adam Thompson/posted to the Luftwaffedata Forum 21 June 2010.
  45. HW13/96 via Adam Thompson/posted to the Luftwaffedata Forum 21 June 2010.
  46. HW13/96 via Adam Thompson/posted to the Luftwaffedata Forum 21 June 2010.
  47. HW13/96 via Adam Thompson/posted to the Luftwaffedata Forum 21 June 2010.
  48. HW13/96 via Adam Thompson/posted to the Luftwaffedata Forum 21 June 2010.
  49. HW13/96 via Adam Thompson/posted to the Luftwaffedata Forum 21 June 2010.
  50. HW13/96 via Adam Thompson/posted to the Luftwaffedata Forum 21 June 2010.
  51. HW13/96 via Adam Thompson/posted to the Luftwaffedata Forum 21 June 2010.
  52. Shores et al – Mediterranean Air War 1940-45 vol1 p 357/358
  53. Shores et al – Mediterranean Air War 1940-45 vol1 p 377/380
  54. Avions 108-110
  55. Shores et al – Mediterranean Air War 1940-45 vol1 p 414
  56. Shores et al – Mediterranean Air War 1940-45 vol1 p 414-415

Cornwell, Peter - The Battle of France Then and Now

Dierich, Wolfgang - Die Verband der Luftwaffe, 1939 - 45

Foreman, John - The Battle of Britain, the Forgotten Months

Goss, Chris - Do 17 in Focus

Green, William - Warplanes of the Third Reich

Griehl, Manfred - Strahlflugzeug Arado Ar 234 Blitz

Mason, Francis - Battle over Britain

Price, Alfred - The Luftwaffe Data Book

Ramsey, Winston et al - The Battle of Britain, Then and Now

Ramsey, Winston et al - The Blitz, Then and Now

Rosch, Barry - Luftwaffe Codes, Markings and Units 1939-45

Shores, et al - Fledgeling Eagles

Shores, et al - Air War for Yugoslavia, Greece and Crete 1940-41

Shores, et al - Malta – The Hurricane Years 1940-41

Shores, et al - Malta – The Spitfire Year – 1942

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