Messerschmitt Bf 110 List


Nachtjagdgeschwader 1 Emblem I. Gruppe Nachtjagdgeschwader 5 - I./NJG5

Messerschmitt Bf 110G4 Stab II./NJG5 (C9+AC) Leopold Fellerer WNr 740039 Gutersloh 1944 0A

Profile 01:0-Bf 110G4-Stab-II.NJG5-(C9+AC)-Leopold-Fellerer-WNr740039-Gutersloh-1944-0A.


2 Staffel I. Gruppe Nachtjagdgeschwader 5 - 2./NJG5

Messerschmitt Bf 110 G Zerstörer 2./NJG5 (C9+AK) captured St. Dizier France 1944

Photo 01: A captured Bf 110G-4 of 2./NJG5 coded C9+IK, photographed at St. Dizier in France in 1944. This machine was camouflaged in 76 on the undersurfaces with a plain 75 in a high demarcation line over all upper surfaces. Note that the Geschwader code 'C9' - not to be confused with the 'G9' of NJG1 is in black, while the aircraft and Staffel letters are in grey.

Messerschmitt Bf 110 G-4 Zerstörer 2./NJG5 (C9+FK) Germany Spring 1945.

Messerschmitt Bf 110G Zerstörer 2./NJG5 (C9+IK) captured St. Dizier France 1944 01

Photo 01: A captured Bf 110G-4 of 2./NJG5 coded C9+IK, photographed at St. Dizier in France in 1944. This machine was camouflaged in 76 on the undersurfaces with a plain 75 in a high demarcation line over all upper surfaces. Note that the Geschwader code 'C9' - not to be confused with the 'G9' of NJG1 is in black, while the aircraft and Staffel letters are in grey.

Nachtjagdgeschwader 1 Emblem II. Gruppe Nachtjagdgeschwader 5 - II./NJG5


5 Staffel II. Gruppe Nachtjagdgeschwader 5 - 5./NJG5

Messerschmitt Bf 110G4 5./NJG5 (C9+EN) Wilhelm Johnen WNr 740055 Dubendorf April 28 1944 01

Photo's 01-02: When Oblt. Wilhelm Johnen, the Staffelkapitän of 6./NJG5, landed this Bf 110G4 at Dubendorf on the night of 27/28 April 1944, it was at first feared that he had defected and his family was immediately arrested. In fact, however, after destroying an RAF bomber as his 19th victory near Strasbourg in eastern France, the pursuit of the remaining bombers had continued close to the Swiss border. Johnen then experienced trouble with an overheating port engine, shut the engine down and headed for home but was blinded by searchlights and so lost his bearings that when the searchlights directed him to an airfield, he landed, only to find that he had strayed into Swiss airspace and was in neutral Switzerland. There, the aircraft and the two other members of his crew were interned. As this machine, an almost new Bf 110G4 WNr. 740055, was equipped with the latest SN-2b airborne intercept radar, 'Lichtenstein' C-1 and oblique armament, its landing intact in neutral territory was of major concern to the Germans who wished details of its equipment to remain secret. In a deal between the German and Swiss authorities, it was arranged that the Bf 110 would be destroyed, in return for which the Swiss would be sold a number of Bf-109Gs. The Bf 110 was duly destroyed on the night of 19 May 1944 and the crew repatriated, but neither the Swiss nor the Germans had been entirely honest with each other. The Swiss had examined and recorded details of the radar before the aircraft was destroyed, while the Bf-109Gs sold to the Swiss were in such poor condition that, post-war, both Messerschmitt and Daimler-Benz were obliged to pay compensation. The Bf 110 was camouflaged in a form of Wellenmuster finish on the uppersurfaces comprising 76 over a base of 75, while the lower surfaces were 76 with the underside of the starboard wing overpainted with black but which terminated in a soft, undulating line just short of the leading edge.

Messerschmitt Bf 110G4 5./NJG5 (C9+EN) Wilhelm Johnen WNr 740055 Dubendorf April 28 1944 03

Photo 03: The victory markings on Oblt. Johnen's aircraft were slightly out-of-date as the tally on the port fin recorded only 17 of the 18 victories with which Oblt. Johnen was credited up to the night of 27/28 April. After being repatriated, Johnen later became Kommandeur of III./NJG6 and increased his victories to 33, for which he was awarded the Ritterkreuz on 31 October 1944. He survived the war with a total of 34 confirmed victories.

Aircrew Luftwaffe pilot Wilhelm Johnen 01

Photo 01: After qualifying as a pilot, Wilhelm Johnen joined I./NJG1 and flew his first night operation on 26 February 1942, during which time he achieved his first aerial victory but was also shot down and badly wounded. Despite this some what erratic start, Johnen went on to complete over 200 missions and achieved 34 victories.

Aircrew Luftwaffe pilot Wilhelm Johnen 02

Photo 02: Looking somewhat bemused by the fuss, Oberleutnant Reinhold Knacke of I./NJG1 is wearing his recently awarded Knight's Cross, presented to him on 1 July 1942 for shooting down 23 bombers. On 28/29 July 1942, Knacke became the first German night fighter pilot to shoot down an RAF Mosquito. He continued to score steadily throughout the rest of 1942 but was killed on the night of 3/4 February 1943 when his total number of victories stood at 44. Knacke was posthumously awarded the Oak Leaves three days later. On his right in this photograph is Wilhelm Johnen.

Pilots NJG1.1 Wilhelm Johnen with Werner Streib June 1943 01

Photo 01: On 30 June 1943, Werner Streib bade farewell to I/.NJG1, which he had commanded since 18 October 1940 and, promoted to Major, he became Kommodore of NJG1. To Streib's left is the officer who succeeded him as Kommandeur of I/.NJG1, Hauptmann Hans-Dieter Frank. Looking on from the far end of the line is Leutnant Wilhelm Johnen.

Aircrew Luftwaffe pilot Wilhelm Johnen 01

Photo 01: After qualifying as a pilot, Wilhelm Johnen joined I./NJG1 and flew his first night operation on 26 February 1942, during which time he achieved his first aerial victory but was also shot down and badly wounded. Despite this some what erratic start, Johnen went on to complete over 200 missions and achieved 34 victories.

Aircrew Luftwaffe pilot Wilhelm Johnen 01

Photo 01: Awarded the Knight's Cross on 29 October 1944, by war's end Wilhelm Johnen had been made Kommandeur of llI./NJG6 and finished the conflict with 34 confirmed kills.

Aircrew Luftwaffe pilot Wilhelm Johnen 03

Photo 03: A very youthful 'Wim' Johnen poses for the camera.

Aircrew Luftwaffe pilot Wilhelm Johnen July 1941 01

Photo 01: Johnen with his overall black Bf 110E at Schleswig in about July 1941, shortly after he joined 3./NJG1, at that time commanded by Oberleutnant Walter Fenske. Note the Nachtjagd emblem, barely visible behind the port engine.

Aircrew Luftwaffe pilot Wilhelm Johnen 1932 01

Photo 01: Johnen with an Fw-44 'Stieglitz', one of the most popular types of aircraft flown by trainee pilots at the A/B Schulen. This radial engined biplane was first flown in the summer of 1932 and proved to be rugged and agile. It was produced in large numbers and established Kurt Tank and his Focke Wulf Company as a serious aircraft manufacturer.

Aircrew Luftwaffe pilot Wilhelm Johnen with Paul Mahle 1944 01

Photo 01: Wilhem Johnen (CENTRE) and his Bordschutze, Ofw. Paul Mahle (RIGHT, shown towards the end of the 'Battle of Berlin' in early 1944. The fin of their Bf no is marked with 14 victory bars, johnen's total after destroying a Lancaster on 27 january, one of three he shot down that night.

Aircrew Luftwaffe pilot Wilhelm Johnen Bordfunker Paul Mahle grave 01

Photo 01: After shooting down a Wellington bomber on the night of 26 March 1942, Johnen's aircraft was badly damaged by return fire from a Stirling. Johnen himself was able to parachute to safety but his Bordfunker, Obergefieiter Albrecht Risop, was killed by the first burst of gunfire from the Stirling. Risop's body was later recovered from the fighter and buried in Südlohn, close to where his aircraft crashed.

Nachtjagdgeschwader 1 Emblem III. Gruppe Nachtjagdgeschwader 5 - III./NJG5


7 Staffel III. Gruppe Nachtjagdgeschwader 5 - 7./NJG5

Messerschmitt Bf 110G Zerstörer Bf 110G4 7./NJG 5 (C9+GR) Paul Zorner Germany 1944

8 Staffel III. Gruppe Nachtjagdgeschwader 5 - 8./NJG5

Messerschmitt Bf 110G-4 8./NJG5 (C9+MS) Germany Spring 1944.

New IL-2 Sturmovik Cliffs of Dover - COD skins


Luftwaffe Badge

Leopold Fellerer

Units: 3./ZG-76 (6/40), Stfkpt 7./NJG-4, Kdr III./NJG-4 (6/43), Kdr I./JG-301 (1/44), Kdr III./JG-300 (12/44)

Awards: DK-G(10/1/44), EP, EK 1 & 2, Wound Badge, Night Fighter Operational Clasp

Known Aircraft: Bf 109G; Bf 110F-2 & Bf 110 WNr5527(lost) in NJG-4, Do 217 & Ju 88 in NJG-4, Bf 109G-10 WNr 491253 (or 233) 'Black <<+I'(lost 12/31/44))

Remarks: KIA 31 December, 1944 in his G-10 north of Hamburg; downed by a P-51. Shot down in Werk # 5527 '3C + AD' by Lancaster return fire on 20 December, 1943, crashing at Bougnez, krs. Malmedy. Buried Hanover-Seelhorst, Block 14/1253. The crew bailed, but not without injury to the R/O & Gunner. The other crew: Fw Franz Stein and Uffz Wilhelm Rürup. On 27 November, 1944, he lost a G-14 at Hattdorf/Harz. Injuries unknown. One known victory, a Hudson at Trondheim, 11 June, 1940. Another, a Wellington 26 km northeast of Laon on 22 November, 1942. A Wellington and a Halifax on 15 April, 1943. A Lancaster at St Arnoud on 2 May, 1944. A triple victory on 8 May, 1944; all three '4 mots', in the Bourges/Romorantin areas. A triple victory on 28 May, 1944; all three Lancasters, in the Brussels/Zottegem area. A '4 mot' N of Mailly-le-Camp on 28 June, 1944. Also flew Bf 110F '3C+AR' (Summer, 1942).

Date Pilot Name Unit Enemy A/C Height Time Location / Remarks
Tuesday, February 11, 1941 Leopold Fellerer 5./NJG1 Hampden   03:50 Bergen-Alkmaar
Sunday, October 12, 1941 Leopold Fellerer 4./NJG1 Halifax   22:17  
Friday, November 07, 1941 Leopold Fellerer 5./NJG2 Stirling 5300m 22:35 8km SW Bergen-aan-Zee
Friday, February 27, 1942 Leopold Fellerer 5./NJG2 Whitley 4100m 21:38 74/4/4i bei Holgast
Sunday, March 29, 1942 Leopold Fellerer 5./NJG2 Stirling 3400m 01:02 75884 (See)
Friday, May 08, 1942 Leopold Fellerer 5/NJG2 Hudson 300m 04:51 4484 in See
Tuesday, June 09, 1942 Leopold Fellerer 5./NJG2 Wellington   02:15 3km NE Petten
Tuesday, June 09, 1942 Leopold Fellerer 5./NJG2 Wellington   02:19 NW Callantsoog
Tuesday, June 30, 1942 Leopold Fellerer 5./NJG2 Halifax   03:02 S. Hoorn
Saturday, August 29, 1942 Leopold Fellerer 5./NJG2 Stirling 3000m 00:30 Aichelbach
Wednesday, September 09, 1942 Leopold Fellerer 5./NJG2 Wellington 4400m 00:34 Nakenheim
Tuesday, December 08, 1942 Leopold Fellerer 5.NJG5 Abschuß   - -
Sunday, October 03, 1943 Leopold Fellerer 5./NJG5 Lancaster 4800m 22:57 40km S Kassel
Friday, October 22, 1943 Leopold Fellerer 5./NJG5 Lancaster 6000m 21:07 15km N Kassel
Friday, November 26, 1943 Leopold Fellerer 5.NJG5 Lancaster   - -
Friday, November 26, 1943 Leopold Fellerer 5.NJG5 Lancaster   - -
Thursday, December 02, 1943 Leopold Fellerer 5./NJG5 Lancaster 5500m 19:36 Hannover (Wesendorf)
Thursday, December 02, 1943 Leopold Fellerer 5./NJG5 Lancaster 5000m 20:15 Berlin (Werder)
Tuesday, January 04, 1944 Leopold Fellerer Stab II./NJG5 B-24 Liberator      
Thursday, January 06, 1944 Leopold Fellerer Stab II.NJG5 B-24 Liberator   03:27 -
Tuesday, January 11, 1944 Leopold Fellerer Stab II./NJG5 B-17 Fortress   12:40E Quakenbruck-Meppen (assessed)
Friday, January 14, 1944 Leopold Fellerer Stab III.NJG5 Lancaster   19:20 -
Friday, January 14, 1944 Leopold Fellerer Stab II.NJG5 4-mot. Flzg.   19:45 -
Thursday, January 20, 1944 Leopold Fellerer Stab II./NJG5 Abschuss      
Thursday, January 20, 1944 Leopold Fellerer Stab II./NJG5 Abschuss      
Thursday, January 20, 1944 Leopold Fellerer Stab II./NJG5 Abschuss      
Thursday, January 20, 1944 Leopold Fellerer Stab II./NJG5 Abschuss      
Thursday, January 20, 1944 Leopold Fellerer Stab II./NJG5 Abschuss      
Saturday, January 29, 1944 Leopold Fellerer Stab II.NJG5 Halifax   03:15 -
Saturday, January 29, 1944 Leopold Fellerer Stab II.NJG5 Halifax   03:01 -
Tuesday, February 15, 1944 Leopold Fellerer Stab II./NJG5 Halifax 6000m 20:46 zw Schwerin u Rostock
Friday, April 28, 1944 Leopold Fellerer Stab II./NJG5 Halifax 4800m 02:20 Borensen
Friday, April 28, 1944 Leopold Fellerer Stab II./NJG5 Halifax 4200m 01:30 EP od FP (Mulhouse)
Tuesday, July 04, 1944 Leopold Fellerer Stab III./NJG6 Halifax 1700m 01:50 10km NE Kaposvar
Friday, July 07, 1944 Leopold Fellerer Stab III./NJG6 Lancaster 3000m 01:45 14 Ost N/KN-1 (E Marburg)
Friday, July 07, 1944 Leopold Fellerer Stab III./NJG6 Wellington 3100m 02:05 14 Ost N/MK-5 (N Laibach)
Friday, July 21, 1944 Leopold Fellerer Stab III./NJG6 C-47 Dakota 1000m 23:42 14 Ost N/OQ-29 (W Brod)
Sunday, August 20, 1944 Leopold Fellerer Stab III./NJG6 B-24 Liberator 3500m 23:50 14 Ost/MK-3 (N Laibach)
Tuesday, September 19, 1944 Leopold Fellerer Stab III./NJG6 C-47 Dakota 3600m 20:55 GC-9/24 Ost N
Friday, October 20, 1944 Leopold Fellerer Stab III./NJG6 B-24 Liberator 1700m 22:21 14 Ost N/LO (S Steinamanger)

Luftwaffe Badge

'I gave a short burst of fIre from my cannon and the Wellington caught fire ... '

LEUTNANT WILHELM JOHNEN, I./NJG 1

After I finished my course of studies at the Grammar School in Homberg, in the Lower Rhine region, war broke out and I volunteered for service in the Luftwaffe on the basis of the qualifications I already had as a glider pilot. My training as a pilot in the Luftwaffe until my qualification as a night fighter pilot took place in Zeltweg, Vienna, Munich and Stuttgart. I trained on all types of aircraft up to blind-flying on multi-engined machines.

I flew my first operation on night fighters with the famous Gruppe I./NJG1, which was based at Venlo in Holland, only about 32 kilometres away from my home town. This first operational flight, which took place on 26 February 1942, turned out to be nothing short of a catastrophe. British bombers were heading for the Ruhr area, which was defended by heavy Flak and searchlight units. My brief was to shoot down any bombers caught in the searchlights above 5,000 metres.

As I flew towards the target, I felt as if I was flying into Hell itself. Anti-aircraft shells were exploding at all heights. Searchlights were sweeping the area looking for bombers and bombs were exploding in the whole Ruhr area. Then I saw a Wellington coned by searchlights very near to us and on my heading.

I gave a short burst from my cannon, and the Wellington caught fire and dived down into the inferno. After the attack on the Ruhr area was over, I turned on a north-westerly heading in the direction of Holland. Suddenly my radio operator, Risop, came up on the intercom - 'Herr Leutnant, there's a four engined aircraft right above us!' Unbelievingly I looked up against the starlit sky, because I had never seen a four-engined aeroplane before. It must have been a Short Stirling. My radio man's last words were, 'Have a go, Herr Leutnant, and God be with us!' I made my attack obliquely from the port side and below. The bomber met our attack with all guns blazing, ripping open the cabin and fatally wounding my radio operator. A bullet wounded me across the surface of my left leg, while further bullets hit my Verey cartridges and the aircraft's fuel tanks.

The Me 110 was burning furiously. It went into a flat spin, losing height rapidly. I jettisoned the cabin roof and tried in vain to abandon the machine. The immense centrifugal force was pressing me back against the side of the cabin. I was sure that my end had come. Then there was an explosion, and I was hurled from the aircraft. I knew that I was on fire. I pulled my parachute ripcord immediately. The parachute opened - and then came the next shock: the parachute had been torn by bullets and one of the panels was fluttering in the wind. With all the strength I could muster I pulled the lines on the sound side of the parachute towards myself to try and stop the panels from turning inside-out. In this way I came to earth with a bang - or, rather a splash - in a lake in the vicinity of Südlohne. Fortunately, I still had my signal pistol, so I fired a cartridge into the air and hoped for salvation. Two men rowed out to me in a small boat and rescued me from my miserable plight. Two hours later I was in bed in a hospital in Duisburg with one leg badly shot-up and severe burns. It was about four months before my recovery was complete. Risop, my radio operator, found his last resting place in Südlohne.

Wilhelm Johnen

Wilhelm 'Wim' Johnen was born in the small town of Homberg, situated on the western bank of the Rhine River and close to the industrial city of Duisburg, on 9 October 1921. He remained in Homberg until the outbreak of the Second World War in September 1939, by which time he had just completed his sUldies and obtained his Abitur. The following month, Johnen turned 18 and he applied to join the Luftwaffe on the basis of qualifications he had already attained as a glider pilot. His formal application to become an officer was accepted and he began his training as an officer cadet with Fliegerausbildungsregiment Nr. 32 at Pardubitz (now Pardubice) in Czechoslovakia, where he received basic infantry training. Having endured several months of field exercises, marching and shooting practice, 'Wim' Johnen spent the next eight months learning to fly elementary and advanced single-engined aircraft and qualified for his pilot's badge on 21 September 1940.

Selected to fly multi-engined aircraft, he was then posted to C-Schule 11 at Zeltweg-Steiermark in Austria and, during a three-month training period, flew such twin-engined aircraft as the He-111 and Do-17 as well as the three-engined Ju-52. On obtaining the 'C' grading to his pilot's licence which allowed him to fly multi-engined aircraft, Johnen attended the Blindjlugschule at Wien-Aspern before progressing to Schleissheim, near Munich, where he received Zerstörer training and, on 1 April 1941, was commissioned as a Leutnant.

It was at about this time, and due mainly to the RAF's intensified air attacks against Germany, that Johnen decided to join the Nachtjagd. The war, which he feared would be over by the time his training was complete, had now become more personal. His home-town, and particularly the surrounding area of Duisburg, with its Thyssen steel factories and large inland port, had been identified as an important, strategic target within the industrial Ruhr valley and had been specifically attacked on a number of occasions by RAF Bomber Command. As his home was in the outskirts of Duisburg, he naturally feared for the safety of his family and it was this concern that led him to apply to join the Nachtjagd. Accordingly, on 18 May 1941, he began his night fighter training at Stuttgart-Echterdingen. His regular Bordfunker was Gefreiter Albrecht Risop, whom he had first met during their training at Schleissheim. After six weeks of intense instruction, Johnen and Risop were transferred to the operational night fighter Staffel 3./NJG1, arriving at this unit's airfield in Schleswig on 25 June 1941.

On 11 July 1941, after a brief period of familiarisation with the Staffel, Johnen flew his first operational mission, during which he encountered a Wellington bomber. However, he failed to shoot it down and thus became aware of the fundamental difficulties involved in fighting at night. Almost another eight months and a further 28 missions passed before, on the evening of 26 March 1942, he took off from Venlo 1 and, at 23.30 hrs, intercepted a Wellington which he shot down north-west of Wesel as his first victory 2 A few minutes later, Risop spotted a four-engined bomber which he identified as a Short Stirling. After a brief exchange of fire between the aircraft, the cockpit and fuselage of Johnen's Bf 110 was raked with machine gun fire and the petrol tanks set ablaze. The same burst of gunfire also killed Risop and wounded Johnen, who then desperately fought to extricate himself from the burning cockpit. Nevertheless, the stricken fighter plunged 3,000 metres with Johnen still aboard before it exploded and threw him clear. Although he was then able to safely parachute to the ground, Johnen received second degree burns to his face and a large number of shell splinters in his left leg kept him from operational flying for two-and-a-half months.

1. 3./NJG1 transferred from Schleswig back to Venia on 1 December 1941.

2. It is highly probable that this aircraft was Wellington X3589 KO-F from 115 Squadron, which crashed at Uedem, approximately 35 kilometres west of Wesel.

A short time after his return to operations, during an RAF raid on Essen on the night of 16/17 June 1942, Johnen shot down a Wellington as his second victory. In recognition of this achievement, he was awarded the Iron Cross Second Class on 26 July 1942.

On 1 December 1942, 3./NJG1 was re-designated 5./NJG5 and transferred to Parchim in north-eastern Germany under the command of Obit. Leopold Fellerer. Due to the airfield's location, 5./NJG5 was less active than units stationed further westwards, and during the first five months of the new year Johnen flew only a small number of sorties. However, in May 1943, the Staffel was posted back to the west to help counter the increasing raids against the Ruhr, and in the early hours of 22 June 1943, after more than a year since his last victory, Johnen finally increased his personal tally by shooting down two bombers during a raid on Krefeld. Three nights later, he intercepted and shot down a Halifax as his fifth confirmed victory, and on 1 July 1943, Johnen was promoted to Oberleutnant.

In August 1943, when Air Chief Marshal Sir Arthur Harris' prolonged offensive began against the German capital, later known as the 'Battle of Berlin' and which lasted until February 1944, 5./NJG5 was once again operating from Parchim and found itself in the thick of the battle. On 24 August 1943, Johnen claimed a Stirling and a Halifax to the north-west of Berlin, and four days later he was awarded the Iron Cross First Class.

Later, with 18 victories, and a growing reputation as a capable night fighter with leadership potential, he was made Staffelkapitän of 6./NJG5 on 31 March 1944. The following month, II./NJG5 was transferred to Leipheim in southern Germany, but when the airfield was badly damaged during a daylight raid, the Gruppe moved to Hagenau in western France.

At 00.48 hrs on 28 April 1944, Johnen took off from Hagenau with Oberfeldwebel Paul Mahle 3 and Leutnant 'Brinos' Kamprath, with orders to intercept 322 Lancasters that had been tasked to destroy armament factories in Friedrichshafen, a small town in southern Germany situated on the banks of Lake Constance. After shooting down one Lancaster, Johnen was hit by return fire from another which set fire to his fighter's port engine. Flying on one engine and with no other option, he was forced to land his aircraft at the nearest available airfield, which turned out to be Dubendorf in neutral Switzerland. Surrendering to Swiss soldiers, the three-man crew was interned and lengthy negotiations with the Swiss government followed. Naturally, as Johnen's aircraft was fitted with SN-2, 'Naxos' and 'Schrage Musik', the Germans did not want it to fall into Allied hands, and in an agreement finally reached between the German and Swiss Intelligence Services, it was arranged that the machine would be destroyed. In exchange, the Swiss would receive 12 Bf-109G-6 fighters from the Luftwaffe at a favourable price. The Bf 110 was subsequently blown up on 18 May 1944, and Johnen and his crew were released six days later.

3. Paul Mahle had been a weapons technician at Parchim and, together with Rudolf Schonert, had developed the first operational 'Schrage Musik' weapons installation. By the time of this particular operation, Mahle had been Johnen's regular Bordschutze for several months. Kamprath, the Gruppe's Signals Officer, was filling in for Johnen's regular Bordfunker who was away on leave.

Meanwhile, however, as it was at first believed that the crew had defected, the families of the crew had been arrested and imprisoned by the Gestapo. Later, after it had been established that the crew had carried out an emergency landing due to combat damage, the families were released and the authorities hushed up the whole incident.

On 10 May 1944, II./NJG5 was re-designated III./NJG6 and Johnen was given command of 8./NJG6. From June 1944 the Gruppe, under the command of Major Herbert Lutje, was transferred to Steinamanger in Hungary, close to the Austrian border. Operating from this airfield, III./NJG6 was tasked with defending Vienna and Budapest from Allied bombers operating from Italy. Over a period of three months, between 26 June and 21 September 1944, Johnen shot down a further 14 aircraft 4 taking his number of confirmed victories to 33. A month later, on 1 October 1944, he was promoted to Hauptmann and, a few weeks later, on 29 October, he was awarded the Knight's Cross.

  1. Four of these aircraft were American B-25 Mitchell bombers, supplied to the Soviet Union via the Arctic convoy route.

With the Russians advancing through Hungary, III./NJG6 was forced to withdraw within Germany's own borders to Leipheim, Neubiberg and then to Bad Aibling, south of Munich. On 13 February 1945, Johnen became Gruppenkommandeur of III./NJG6, and a month later, during a raid against Würzburg on the night of 15/16 March 1945, he shot down a Lancaster for his 34th and final victory of the war.

On the night of 30 April 1945, with the Americans in control of the area around Munich, Hauptmann Will1elm Johnen gave the men of his Gruppe orders to destroy their remaining aircraft before they fell into enemy hands. When the war finally ended on 8 May 1945, Johnen was held for a short time in American captivity and later studied for several years at Munich University where he obtained an engineering degree in construction. He was then employed by a contractor working for Messerschmitt Pre-Fabricated Buildings, owned by Professor Willi Messerschmitt, and later formed his own construction company, which he managed for almost 40 years. Wilhelm Johnen died at his home in Uberlingen on Lake Constance, on 7 February 2002.

Wilhelm ‘Wim' Johnen was born on 9 October 1921 at Homberg in Niederrhein. In June 1941, Johnen was posted to NJG1. Leutnant Johnen was assigned to 3./NJG1. He gained his first victory on the night of 26/27 March 1942, when he shot down a RAF Wellington twin-engine bomber. He then attacked a RAF Stirling four-engine bomber but his Bf 110D-3 (W.Nr. 4224) G9+FL was hit by return fire from the bomber's gunners killing his crewman and wounding Johnen in the left leg. Johnen managed to bale out of the burning aircraft. He was to spend a considerable time in hospital for treatment to his burns and wounded leg. He returned to combat duty in July 1942. On 1 October, 3./NJG1 was redesignated 1./NJG5. In December, 1./NJG5 was redesignated 5./NJG5. Johnen recorded seven victories during 1943. In January 1944, he added a further seven victories, including three RAF Lancaster four-engine bombers on the night of 27/28 January to record his 13th through 15th victories. He downed a further three Lancasters on the night of 15/16 February (16-18).

On 3 March 1944, Johnen was appointed Staffelkapitän of 6./NJG5. On the night of 27/28 April, Johnen shot down a RAF Lancaster four-engine bomber. He and his crew then made contact with another over Lake Constance heading west for Switzerland. Johnen attacked the Lancaster but his Bf 110G-4 (W.Nr. 740055) C9+EN received hits in the encounter setting the port engine alight. Coned by Swiss searchlights and with a dead engine Johnen was obliged to land at the Swiss airfield at Zürich-Dubendorf. Johnen and his crew were interned only to be repatriated some days later amid much political manoeuvering. Johnen was appointed Staffelkapitän of 8./NJG6 on 10 May 1944 based in Hungary. In a little over two months, Johnen added 11 victories to his tally, including four Russian Mitchell twin-engine bombers. Oberleutnant Johnen was awarded the Ritterkreuz on 23 July for 33 victories. In autumn 1944, Johnen was appointed Gruppenkommandeur of III./NJG6. He led the unit until the end of the war.

Post-war, Johnen attended university and gained an Engineering degree. In 1952 he worked with Professor Willi Messerschmitt before taking up construction engineering, successfully running his own business. Johnen died on 7 February 2002 at Überlingen. ‘Wim' Johnen was credited with 34 victories in over 200 missions. All his victories were recorded at night. Included in his victory total are 24 four-engine bombers.

34 aerial victories for Wilhelm Johnen I./NJG 1

No Date Time A/c Type Unit Location / Comments
1 26.3.1942 23:30 Wellington 3./NJG 1 Essen
2 17.6.1942 1:00 Wellington 3./NJG 1 Holland
3 22.6.1943 1:43 Halifax 3./NJG 1 5km E Roosendaal
4 22.6.1943 2:33 Wellington 3./NJG 1 NWHaamstede
5 25.6.1943 1:01 Halifax 3./NJG 1 3km N Rosenburg
6 24.8.1943 1:03 Stirling 5./NJG 5 NW Berlin
7 24.8.1943 1:08 Halifax 5./NJG 5 WNW Berlin
8 1.9.1943 0:58 Lancaster 5./NJG 5 30km SW Berlin
9 3.1.1944 2:56 Lancaster 5./NJG 5 20km SW Berlin
10 3.1.1944 3:16 Lancaster 5./NJG 5 70km SW Berlin
11 6.1.1944 3:27 Lancaster 5./NJG 5 Near Tütos
12 20.1.1944 19:36 Lancaster 5./NJG 5 NNW Berlin
13 27.1.1944 20:36 Lancaster 5./NJG 5 SSE Berlin
14 27.1.1944 20:57 Lancaster 5./NJG 5 SSE Berlin
15 27.1.1944 21:17 Lancaster 5./NJG 5 SW Berlin
16 15.2.1944 20:34 Viermot 5./NJG 5 SE Damgarten
17 15.2.1944 20:44 Lancaster 5./NJG 5 UF
18 15.2.1944 21:20 Lancaster 5./NJG 5 NNW Berlin
19 28.4.1944 1:31 Lancaster 6./NJG 5 Near Besançon
20 26.6.1944 0:22 Wellington 8./NJG 6 SE Hungary / Wellington X (LN748) “E” of the 205th BG
21 7.7.1944 1:17 Wellington 8./NJG 6 7km N St Polten
22 7.7.1944 1:25 Wellington 8./NJG 6 S Pyhra
23 11.8.1944 2:08 Mitchell 8./NJG 6 SE Hungary
24 15.8.1944 22:59 Mitchell 8./NJG 6 SE Hungary
25 21.8.1944 22:42 Mitchell 8./NJG 6 SE Hungary
26 22.8.1944 22:23 Halifax 8./NJG 6 13km S Szombor / Halifax II of the 614 Sq 205 BG
27 26.8.1944 21:53 Halifax 8./NJG 6 SE Hungary / Halifax II of the 1586 Flight 205 BG (Polish crew)
28 26.8.1944 22:30 Mitchell 8./NJG 6 SE Hungary
29 27.8.1944 21:50 Halifax 8./NJG 6 SE Hungary / Halifax II of the 1586 Flight 205 BG (Polish crew)
30 28.8.1944 22:12 Halifax 8./NJG 6 SE Hungary
31 10.9.1944 22:38 Halifax 8./NJG 6 SE Hungary / probably Liberator VI of the 1586 Flight 205 BG
32 13.9.1944 21:30 Halifax 8./NJG 6 SE Hungary / probably Liberator VI of the 1586 Flight 205 BG
33 21.9.1944 20:32 Halifax 8./NJG 6 SE Hungary / probably Liberator VI of the 31 Sq 205 BG
34 16.3.1945 2:45 Lancaster Stab III./NJG 6 15km SE Würzburg

Victories : 34
Awards : Ehrenpokal (20 March 1943)
Deutsches Kreuz in Gold (23 July 1944)
Ritterkreuz (29 October 1944)
Units : NJG1, NJG5, NJG6
http://www.luftwaffe.cz/johnen.html

Asisbiz 34 aerial victories for Wilhelm Johnen I./NJG 1

Date Pilot Name Unit Enemy A/C Type Height Time Location Remarks
26-Mar-42 Wilhelm Johnen 3.NJG1 Wellington   23:30 NW Wesel  
17-Jun-42 Wilhelm Johnen 2.NJG1 Wellington   01:00 -  
22-Jun-43 Wilhelm Johnen 2./NJG1 Halifax 5300m 01:43 5km E Roosendaal  
22-Jun-43 Wilhelm Johnen 2./NJG1 Wellington 1500m 02:33 05 Ost S/JG33 (NWHaamstede)  
25-Jun-43 Wilhelm Johnen 2./NJG1 Halifax 3800m 01:01 3km N Rosenburg  
24-Aug-43 Wilhelm Johnen 5./NJG5 Stirling 4200m 01:02 NW Berlin  
24-Aug-43 Wilhelm Johnen 5./NJG5 Stirling 4500m 01:07 NW Berlin  
01-Sep-43 Wilhelm Johnen 5./NJG5 Lancaster 4200m 00:58 20km SW Berlin  
03-Jan-44 Wilhelm Johnen 5.NJG5 Lancaster   02:56 20km SW Berlin  
03-Jan-44 Wilhelm Johnen 5.NJG5 Lancaster   03:12 70km SW Berlin  
20-Jan-44 Wilhelm Johnen 5.NJG5 Lancaster   19:36 NNW Berlin  
27-Jan-44 Wilhelm Johnen 5.NJG5 Lancaster   20:36 SSE Berlin  
27-Jan-44 Wilhelm Johnen 5.NJG5 Lancaster   20:57 SSW Berlin  
27-Jan-44 Wilhelm Johnen 5.NJG5 Lancaster   21:18 SW Berlin  
15-Feb-44 Wilhelm Johnen 5./NJG5 4-mot. Flzg. 5500m 20:34 zw Rostock u Strahlsund  
15-Feb-44 Wilhelm Johnen 5./NJG5 Halifax   20:45 Gegund Kummenerer See  
15-Feb-44 Wilhelm Johnen 5./NJG5 Halifax 5500m 21:30 Gegend Berlin  
28-Apr-44 Wilhelm Johnen 8./NJG6 Halifax 5200m 01:31 30-60km SW Strasbourg  
26-Jun-44 Wilhelm Johnen 8./NJG6 Wellington 2500m 00:22 SW Plattensee Wellington X (LN748) “E” of the 205th BG
27-Jun-44 Wilhelm Johnen 8./NJG6 Wellington   00:22 sudEast of Balaton durch  
07-Jul-44 Wilhelm Johnen 8./NJG6 Wellington 2300m 01:17 40km S Obj Fels-am-Wagram  
07-Jul-44 Wilhelm Johnen 8./NJG6 Wellington 2000m 01:25 40km S Obj Fels-am-Wagram  
11-Aug-44 Wilhelm Johnen 8./NJG6 B-25 Mitchell   02:08 24 Ost/QB-4 Himmelbettabschuss  
16-Aug-44 Wilhelm Johnen 8./NJG6 B-25 Mitchell 3400m 22:59 Raum Skorpion durch  
21-Aug-44 Wilhelm Johnen 8./NJG6 B-25 Mitchell   22:42 Himmelbettabschuss durch  
22-Aug-44 Wilhelm Johnen 8./NJG6 Halifax 2800m 22:23 14 Ost N/OJ-33 (S Fiume) Halifax II of the 614 Sq 205 BG
26-Aug-44 Wilhelm Johnen 8./NJG6 Halifax 3200m 22:00 MT-54 (SE Baja) Halifax II of the 1586 Flight 205 BG (Polish crew)
26-Aug-44 Wilhelm Johnen 8./NJG6 B-25 Mitchell   22:30 14 Ost/OT-76 durch  
27-Aug-44 Wilhelm Johnen 8./NJG6 Halifax 3800m 21:50 14 Ost/US-59 Halifax II of the 1586 Flight 205 BG (Polish crew)
28-Aug-44 Wilhelm Johnen 8./NJG6 Halifax 1800m 22:12 14 Ost/MS-45 (N Mohacs)  
10-Sep-44 Wilhelm Johnen 8./NJG6 Halifax 2700m 23:38 14 Ost/NU-3/MU-9 (W Szeged) probably Liberator VI of the 1586 Flight 205 BG
13-Sep-44 Wilhelm Johnen 8./NJG6 Halifax 4000m 21:30 14 Ost/MT-86 (SE Baja) probably Liberator VI of the 1586 Flight 205 BG
21-Sep-44 Wilhelm Johnen 8./NJG6 Halifax 2500m 20:32 14 Ost N/NU-73 (W Senta) probably Liberator VI of the 31 Sq 205 BG
16-Mar-45 Wilhelm Johnen Stab III./NJG6 Lancaster   02:45 15km SE Wurzburg  

Knights Cross

Paul Zorner

Units: Instr 40-41, 4/KGzbV-104, II./NJG-2 (7/42 Gilze-Rijen), 8./NJG-2, 10./NJG-3, Stffüh 2./NJG-3 (12/42 Wittmundhafen), Stfkpt 3 (3/43/Vechta) & Stfkpt 8./NJG-3 (Kastrup Denmark), Kdr III./NJG-5 (4/44 Mainz-Finthen), Kdr II./NJG-100

Awards: RK(6/9/44)-EL(9/17/44), DK-G(3/20/44), EP(8/31/43), EK 1 (3/12/43) & 2 (6/9/41), Trans Oper. Clasp in Silver (10/21/41) & Night Ftr Oper. Clasp in Gold (3/30/44)

Known Aircraft: Ju 52; Ju 88, Bf 110E-1 WNr 3962 'D5+DH' (force land-US bomber combat, 4/17/43), Bf 110G-4 WNr 6219 (bailed-eng fire, 7/25/43), Bf 110G-4 'C9+AD'('44), Do 217 in /NJG-2; Bf 109, Do 217, Ju 88G-6 WNr 621541 'W7+AC' in NJG-100

Remarks: After surrendering his Group at Karlsbad on 10 May, 1945, he was turned over to the Russians. Russian POW until December, 1949. A Transport pilot from March to October, 1941 with 162 missions in N.Africa, the Med, and Russia, converted to Night Fighter. Shot down during aerial combat in Bf 110E-1 Werk# 3962 'D5+DH near Cloppenburgh on 17 April, 1944. Lost another Bf 110, a G-4 model, Werk# 6219 on 25 July, 1944 due to an engine fire. All the crew bailed safely. 272 combat missions; 59 victories in 110 Night missions! All victories were Night victories. A Lancaster I of RAF No.166 Sq Werk # ME 636, piloted by W/O G.A. Woodcock at Müritz the night of 15-16 February, 1944. Four '4 mots' on 11 June, 1944 in the Dreux area. His long-time R/O was Fw Heinrich Wilke, a RK recipient 29 November, 1944. His 59th and last victory, a B-24 SSE of Graz on 6 March, 1945, when he served as Kdr II/NJG-100. Bowers/Lednicer, 59 victories. Last known, living in Homburg. Photo

Asisbiz database list of 40 aerial victories for Paul Zorner

Date Pilot Name Unit Enemy A/C Type Height Time Location
17-Jan-43 Paul Zorner 2./NJG3 Halifax 2100m 21:55 658 8H6
11-Feb-43 Paul Zorner 2./NJG3 Lancaster 5200m 20:44 64/1/5G9
19-Feb-43 Paul Zorner 2./NJG3 A-20 Boston 2000m 20:34 74/1/8H1
26-Feb-43 Paul Zorner 2./NJG3 Stirling 1400m 20:46 64/3/1A5
07-Mar-43 Paul Zorner 2./NJG3 Wellington 1700m 20:30 234 6A1
14-Mar-43 Paul Zorner 2./NJG3 Wellington 900m 03:51 74/1/8F1
29-Jun-43 Paul Zorner 1./NJG3 Wellington 4900m 02:22 9km NW Lowen
04-Jul-43 Paul Zorner 1./NJG3 Wellington 5300m 01:09 2km E Neerhespen
09-Jul-43 Paul Zorner 1./NJG3 Lancaster 6500m 01:53 bei Harze (S Liege)
25-Jul-43 Paul Zorner 1./NJG3 Halifax 5600m 03:54 Ten Boer (Groningen)
18-Aug-43 Paul Zorner 7./NJG3 Lancaster 4400m 01:53 15 Ost N/UH-11 (Greifswald)
18-Aug-43 Paul Zorner 7./NJG3 Lancaster 2700m 02:03 Peenemunde
23-Nov-43 Paul Zorner 8./NJG3 4-mot. Flzg. 5500m 20:09 40km NW Berlin
02-Dec-43 Paul Zorner 8./NJG3 Lancaster 5800m 19:24 South of Sulingen
02-Dec-43 Paul Zorner 8./NJG3 Lancaster 5600m 20:29 Raum Berlin
20-Dec-43 Paul Zorner 8./NJG3 Lancaster 5400m 20:02 Hintermeilingen
24-Dec-43 Paul Zorner 8./NJG3 Lancaster 5500m 03:02 Rodsenhain
24-Dec-43 Paul Zorner 8./NJG3 Lancaster 6300m 05:43 Vechta-Quakenbruck
24-Dec-43 Paul Zorner 8./NJG3 Lancaster 6100m 06:02 2km NW Apeldoorn
03-Jan-44 Paul Zorner 8.NJG3 Lancaster   03:10 bei Luckenwalde
06-Jan-44 Paul Zorner 8.NJG3 Lancaster   03:42 NW Stettin
06-Jan-44 Paul Zorner 8.NJG3 Lancaster   03:51 NW Stettin
20-Jan-44 Paul Zorner 8.NJG3 Lancaster   19:31 NW Berlin
20-Jan-44 Paul Zorner 8.NJG3 Lancaster   19:45 NW Berlin
15-Feb-44 Paul Zorner 8./NJG3 Lancaster 6300m 20:22 3km SO Rebeitz
15-Feb-44 Paul Zorner 8./NJG3 Lancaster 6600m 21:11 N Neuruppin
20-Feb-44 Paul Zorner 8./NJG3 Lancaster 5800m 03:04 LF Kohne
20-Feb-44 Paul Zorner 8./NJG3 Lancaster 6000m 03:17 Nahe vor Wesendorf
20-Feb-44 Paul Zorner 8./NJG3 Lancaster 5800m 03:26 Nahe vor Gardelegen
20-Feb-44 Paul Zorner 8./NJG3 Lancaster 3200m 03:41 South of Briest
24-Feb-44 Paul Zorner 8./NJG3 Abschuss      
24-Feb-44 Paul Zorner 8./NJG3 Abschuss      
24-Feb-44 Paul Zorner 8./NJG3 Abschuss      
24-Feb-44 Paul Zorner 8./NJG3 Abschuss      
24-Feb-44 Paul Zorner 8./NJG3 Abschuss      
24-Feb-44 Paul Zorner 8./NJG3 Lancaster 5800m 22:15 West of Stuttgart
24-Feb-44 Paul Zorner 8./NJG3 Lancaster 6500m 22:20 WSW Stuttgart
24-Feb-44 Paul Zorner 8./NJG3 Lancaster 6000m 22:30 SW Stuttgart
25-Feb-44 Paul Zorner 8./NJG3 Lancaster 6700m 00:25 West of Stuttgart
25-Feb-44 Paul Zorner 8./NJG3 Lancaster 5500m 00:51 N Stuttgart
22-Mar-44 Paul Zorner 8./NJG3 4-mot. Flzg. 5900m 21:43 Raum Giessen
22-Mar-44 Paul Zorner 8./NJG3 Lancaster 5900m 22:18 Raum Giessen
24-Mar-44 Paul Zorner 8./NJG3 4-mot. Flzg. 6700m 22:57 LF (ostw Leipzig)
26-Mar-44 Paul Zorner 8./NJG3 4-mot. Flzg. 5800m 22:30 Frankreich Grenze
26-Mar-44 Paul Zorner 8./NJG3 4-mot. Flzg. 5800m 23:04 West of St Trond
21-Apr-44 Paul Zorner Stab III./NJG5 Mosquito 4000m 03:30 20km SE Brussels
23-Apr-44 Paul Zorner Stab III./NJG5 Halifax 6000m 01:03 Raum Aachen
28-Apr-44 Paul Zorner Stab III./NJG5 Lancaster 5200m 01:20 C0-DO
28-Apr-44 Paul Zorner Stab III./NJG5 Lancaster 5500m 01:51 SW Strasbourg
28-Apr-44 Paul Zorner Stab III./NJG5 Lancaster 6000m 02:10 NW Friedrichshafen
01-Jun-44 Paul Zorner Stab III./NJG5 4-mot. Flgz. 3000m 02:35 Villeguines-Anmont
03-Jun-44 Paul Zorner Stab III./NJG5 4-mot. Flzg. 1600m 01:22 30km WNE vor FF evreux
11-Jun-44 Paul Zorner Stab III./NJG5 4-mot. Flzg. 2500m 01:00 BC-2 (W Dreux)
11-Jun-44 Paul Zorner Stab III./NJG5 4-mot. Flzg. 2500m 01:01 BC-2 (SE Verneuil-sur-Avre)
11-Jun-44 Paul Zorner Stab III./NJG5 4-mot. Flzg. 2300m 01:08 BC-1 (SE Verneuil-sur-Avre)
11-Jun-44 Paul Zorner Stab III./NJG5 4-mot. Flzg.   01:42 BC-5 (SW Dreux)
25-Jun-44 Paul Zorner Stab III./NJG5 4-mot. Flzg. 2500m 00:32 ostw Boulogne
25-Jun-44 Paul Zorner Stab III./NJG5 4-mot. Flzg. 2700m 00:50 NW vor Etaples
01-Jul-44 Paul Zorner Stab III./NJG5 Lancaster 2400m 01:22 HD-JD-JE (120˚ Vatan)
25-Jul-44 Paul Zorner Stab III./NJG5 4-mot. Flzg. 3200m 02:25 50km SE FuF Kuh
25-Jul-44 Paul Zorner Stab III./NJG5 4-mot. Flzg. 3400m 02:35 30km SW FuF Kuh
25-Jul-44 Paul Zorner Stab III./NJG5 4-mot. Flzg. 3600m 02:54 30km NW St Dizier
06-Mar-45 Paul Zorner Stab II./NJG100 B-24 Liberator   01:30 SSE Graz

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