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XyZspineZyX
09-20-2003, 06:11 PM
continuing the story from 'I flew for the Fuhrer' by Heinz Knocke (Me109)......... and including the first part for those who missed the previous thread.....

28th February, 1942.
The Plotting Sergeant from the operations room next door
comes bursting into my office, where I have been busy writing
at my desk for some hours.
" Sir, that intruder is back again! "
I shoot out through the window and slither down the icy
slope to the runway.
The alert is sounding. Already the ground-crew is at work
on my aircraft. Camouflaged screens are tossed into the snow
and the canopy flaps open. Even as I fasten my safety-belt the
inertia starter begins to wail.
" Contact! "
The ground-crews close the canopy and slide off the wing.
I switch on the ignition, and the engine thunders into life. A cloud of glistening snow is whirled up high into the air behind
me. I have to use almost full throttle to drag the plane through
the deep snow.
A few seconds later I am airborne. Time: 1146 hours.
Base does excellent work today. I receive frequent position
reports on the Tommy. Near Christiansand he crosses the
coast, as he did yesterday and the day before. Altitude 25,000
feet.
Eighteen minutes after being airborne I have reached the
same altitude as the intruder. " Bandit in Bena-Kurfurst-
Hanni-eight-zero." So runs the message from base.
That means that the intruder is in map reference sector
B-K, at an altitude of 25,000 feet. In that case I may spot
him at any moment. The thin veils of ice-cloud cause visibility
to be somewhat reduced. I must keep an infernally keen
lookout.
" Bandit now in Berta-Ludwig."
Blast! Where can the bastard have got to ? I turn my head
first to one side and then the other, looking in all directions. I
run into a thin ice-cloud and wheel off to the right.
Suddenly I tense inside. There he is, just a few feet over-
head. A Spitfire. The R.A.F. rondel markings are the size
of cartwheels.
With a jerk I lift the nose of my plane. I have got to get
him!
But by now he has spotted me also. He whips round in a
tight turn towards me, drops his nose, and straightens out in a
dive far below.
Throttle back: bank to the left. I must not lose sight of
him. With both hands I pull the stick back hard into my belly
while in a vertical bank; my body feels as if a giant hand is
pressing it down into the seat, and for a moment my vision
blacks out.
There he is again. He had put his plane into a vertical dive
and is heading west for the open sea. I go down in a dive
after him. At full throttle the noise of the engine becomes a
frenzied scream, and the vibration causes the wings to quiver
under the strain.
I adjust the sights and fire.
Must get closer range. To gain increased speed I close the
radiator cooling flaps. Never mind if the radiator boils over;
never mind if the engine goes to pieces, I have to get him,
whatever happens.
The Spitfire goes down like a meteor shooting through space.
That plane is certainly a magnificent piece of work, and it is
being flown by a lad who knows what he is doing and has plenty
of nerve.
20,000 feet: he is in my sights, and I again open fire.
18,000 feet: range too great, estimate at 1,000 feet.
12,000 feet: my engine is beginning to boil.
10,000 feet: the dive is now even steeper than before.
6,000 feet: the Spitfire is faster. The distance between us
increases. My eardrums are popping, and my head feels like
bursting. This vertical power-dive is hell on a pilot. I have
ripped the oxygen mask from my face. There is an over-
powering smell of glycol. The engine has boiled. The oil
temperature rises. Still the airspeed indicator registers over
500 miles per hour.
3,000 feet: slowly the Tommy straightens out from the
dive. We both skim low across the snowfields in the high coastal mountains.
This Spitfire is a terrific plane. The gap widens between us. We reach the open sea.
I gave up the chase. My engine is about to seize. Throttle back; open the radiator flaps. The Tommy is now no more than a tiny speck on the horizon.
Coming round in a wide sweep until I am again heading for land, I fly up the Sound to the Inner Fjord, hemmed in on all sides by the rocky precipices. Magnificent scenery, if one is in the mood to appreciate it.
Landing at 1303 hours.
I find that I am shivering. With rage and cold, besides
reaction after that power dive, which was certainly no picnic.
" Give me a double brandy! "

XyZspineZyX
09-20-2003, 06:11 PM
continuing the story from 'I flew for the Fuhrer' by Heinz Knocke (Me109)......... and including the first part for those who missed the previous thread.....

28th February, 1942.
The Plotting Sergeant from the operations room next door
comes bursting into my office, where I have been busy writing
at my desk for some hours.
" Sir, that intruder is back again! "
I shoot out through the window and slither down the icy
slope to the runway.
The alert is sounding. Already the ground-crew is at work
on my aircraft. Camouflaged screens are tossed into the snow
and the canopy flaps open. Even as I fasten my safety-belt the
inertia starter begins to wail.
" Contact! "
The ground-crews close the canopy and slide off the wing.
I switch on the ignition, and the engine thunders into life. A cloud of glistening snow is whirled up high into the air behind
me. I have to use almost full throttle to drag the plane through
the deep snow.
A few seconds later I am airborne. Time: 1146 hours.
Base does excellent work today. I receive frequent position
reports on the Tommy. Near Christiansand he crosses the
coast, as he did yesterday and the day before. Altitude 25,000
feet.
Eighteen minutes after being airborne I have reached the
same altitude as the intruder. " Bandit in Bena-Kurfurst-
Hanni-eight-zero." So runs the message from base.
That means that the intruder is in map reference sector
B-K, at an altitude of 25,000 feet. In that case I may spot
him at any moment. The thin veils of ice-cloud cause visibility
to be somewhat reduced. I must keep an infernally keen
lookout.
" Bandit now in Berta-Ludwig."
Blast! Where can the bastard have got to ? I turn my head
first to one side and then the other, looking in all directions. I
run into a thin ice-cloud and wheel off to the right.
Suddenly I tense inside. There he is, just a few feet over-
head. A Spitfire. The R.A.F. rondel markings are the size
of cartwheels.
With a jerk I lift the nose of my plane. I have got to get
him!
But by now he has spotted me also. He whips round in a
tight turn towards me, drops his nose, and straightens out in a
dive far below.
Throttle back: bank to the left. I must not lose sight of
him. With both hands I pull the stick back hard into my belly
while in a vertical bank; my body feels as if a giant hand is
pressing it down into the seat, and for a moment my vision
blacks out.
There he is again. He had put his plane into a vertical dive
and is heading west for the open sea. I go down in a dive
after him. At full throttle the noise of the engine becomes a
frenzied scream, and the vibration causes the wings to quiver
under the strain.
I adjust the sights and fire.
Must get closer range. To gain increased speed I close the
radiator cooling flaps. Never mind if the radiator boils over;
never mind if the engine goes to pieces, I have to get him,
whatever happens.
The Spitfire goes down like a meteor shooting through space.
That plane is certainly a magnificent piece of work, and it is
being flown by a lad who knows what he is doing and has plenty
of nerve.
20,000 feet: he is in my sights, and I again open fire.
18,000 feet: range too great, estimate at 1,000 feet.
12,000 feet: my engine is beginning to boil.
10,000 feet: the dive is now even steeper than before.
6,000 feet: the Spitfire is faster. The distance between us
increases. My eardrums are popping, and my head feels like
bursting. This vertical power-dive is hell on a pilot. I have
ripped the oxygen mask from my face. There is an over-
powering smell of glycol. The engine has boiled. The oil
temperature rises. Still the airspeed indicator registers over
500 miles per hour.
3,000 feet: slowly the Tommy straightens out from the
dive. We both skim low across the snowfields in the high coastal mountains.
This Spitfire is a terrific plane. The gap widens between us. We reach the open sea.
I gave up the chase. My engine is about to seize. Throttle back; open the radiator flaps. The Tommy is now no more than a tiny speck on the horizon.
Coming round in a wide sweep until I am again heading for land, I fly up the Sound to the Inner Fjord, hemmed in on all sides by the rocky precipices. Magnificent scenery, if one is in the mood to appreciate it.
Landing at 1303 hours.
I find that I am shivering. With rage and cold, besides
reaction after that power dive, which was certainly no picnic.
" Give me a double brandy! "

XyZspineZyX
09-20-2003, 06:15 PM
4th March, 1942.
My Tommy has not put in an appearance for three days.
The Commanding Officer has offered a bottle of genuine Hennessey brandy as a prize for shooting him down-a rare
and valuable prize indeed here in the Far North.
Of course I am less interested in winning the Hennessey than .
I am in getting that bastard. I am a fighter pilot, and for that
reason I have to get him.
5th March, 1942.
A shout from the operations room : " There he is again ! "
Out through the window and into the snow in one bound,
twenty or thirty long strides, and I am in my aircraft. Seconds
later I start rolling to take off.
1202 hours: climbing steeply into the cloudless sky.
1210 hours: altitude 15,000 feet. I adjust the oxygen mask.
It is bitterly cold.
" Bandit in Caesar-Ida-Hanni-seven-zero."
" Victor, victor; message understood," I reply.
Altitude 20,000 feet.
" Bandit now in Cssar-Kurfiirst."
" Victor, victor, message understood."
Altitude 22,000 feet: I shall climb to 25,000. I simply must
get him today.
" Bandit in Berta-Ludwig."
He seems to be sweeping round the northern tip of the
Sound, heading up towards the anchorage of our warships.
I am now at 25,000 feet, scanning the skies around and
below. Ahead and to the left I discern a tiny dark speck in the
sky against the unbroken white landscape below.
It is the Spitfire, leaving a short vapour trail behind. The
Tommy comes round in a wide sweep, heading up the Inner
Fjord. I maintain altitude and study my prey. Now over
his objective, the Tommy flies round in two complete circles.
He is taking photographs.
I make use of this opportunity to take up a position above
him. Apparently he is so intent on his task that he does not
notice me. I am now about 3,000 feet above him.
Then he starts back on a westerly course. I open my
throttle wide and check my guns as I swoop down upon him.
In a few seconds I am right on his tail. Fire !
My tracers vanish into his fuselage. And now he begins to
twist and turn like a mad thing. Must not let him escape.
Keep firing with everything I have.
He goes into a dive, then straightens out again. He begins
trailing smoke, which gradually becomes denser. I fire yet
again.
Then something suddenly splashes into my windshield.
Oil. My engine? I have no visibility ahead, and am no
longer able to see the Spitfire. Blast!
My engine is still running smoothly. Apparently the oil in
front of my eyes must have come from the badly damaged
Spitfire when its oil-cooler was shot to pieces.
I veer a little to the right, in order to be able to observe the
Tommy farther through the side window. He is gradually
losing speed, but is still flying. The smoke-trail is becoming
thinner.
Then another Messerschmitt comes into view climbing up
on my left. It is Lieutenant Dieter Gerhard, my old comrade,
and I radio him to say that I am no longer able to fire.
" Then let me finish him, Heinz ! "
He opens fire. The right wing of the Spitfire shears away.
Like a dead autumn leaf, the plane flutters earthwards.
And the pilot? Is he still alive? My throat tightens. I
had come to like that boy. If he is not dead, why does he not
bale out ?
The Spitfire goes down, a flaming torch now, hurtling
towards the snowfield. It will crash there and be utterly
destroyed. And with it the pilot.
I find myself shouting as if he could hear me: " Bale out,
lad, bale out! " After all, he is human, too; a soldier, too,
and a pilot with the same love of the sky and clouds that I feel.
Does he also have a wife, a girl like Lilo, perhaps ?
" Bale out, lad, bale out! "
Then a body becomes detached from the flames and falls
clear. A white parachute spreads open and drifts slowly down
into the mountains.
A feeling of pure joy is in my heart now. This is my first
combat victory in the air. I have got my man, and he is alive.
Dieter and I share the bottle of brandy. We drink a toast
to our own fighter pilots, and another one to our Tommy.
Dieter brings him in, after landing in the mountains in a
Fieseler Storch fitted with skis. He is a tall, slim Pilot Officer
in the Royal Air Force. A stiff drink of brandy does him a lot
of good. He joins in the laughter when I explain how the
enure bottle was actually dedicated to him.

and from his training days................

l2th October, 1940.
I had hoped for a posting to an operational unit this month
Unfortunately, training is far behind schedule, because of the
bad autumn weather.
We have a rough time in training here also. There have been
one or two fatal accidents every week for the past six weeks in
our Course alone. Today Sergeant Schmidt crashed and was
killed. He was one of our section of five.
We have spent several days on theoretical conversion train-
ing before flying the Messerschmitt 109, which is difficult to
handle and dangerous at first. We can now go through every
movement in our sleep.
This morning we brought out the first 109 and were ready to
fly. Sergeant Schmidt was chosen as the first of us, by draw-
ing lots. He took off without difficulty, which was something,
as the aircraft will only too readily crash on take-off if one is not
careful. A premature attempt to climb will cause it to whip
over into a spin, swiftly and surely. I have seen that happen
hundreds of times, and it frequently means the death of the
pilot.
Schmidt came in to land after making one circuit; but he
misjudged the speed, which was higher than that to which he
was accustomed, and so he overshot the runway. He came
round again, and the same thing happened. We began to
worry, for Sergeant Schmidt had obviously lost his nerve.
He was coming in and making a final turn before flattening out to touch down, when the aircraft suddenly stalled because of insufficient speed and spun out of control, crashing into the ground and exploding a few hundred feet short of the end of the runway. We all raced like madmen over to the scene of
the crash. I was the first to arrive. Schmidt had been
thrown clear, and was lying several feet away from the flaming
wreckage. He was screaming like an animal, covered in blood.
I stooped down over the body of my comrade, and saw that both legs were missing. I held his head. The screams were
driving me insane. Blood poured over my hands. I have
never felt so helpless in my life. The screaming finally
stopped, and became an even more terrible silence. Then
Kuhl and the others arrived, but by that time Schmidt was dead.
Major von Kornatzky ordered training to be resumed forth-
with, and less than an hour later the next 109 was brought out.
this time it was my turn.
I went into the hangar and washed the blood off my hands.
Then the mechanics tightened up my safety-belt, and I was
taxiing over to the take-off point. My heart was madly thump-
ing. Not even the deafening roar of the engine was loud
enough to drown out of my ears the lingering screams of my
comrade as he lay there dying like an animal. I was no sooner
airborne than I noticed the stains on my flying-suit. They
were great dark bloodstains, and I was frightened. It was a
horrible, paralysing fear. I could only be thankful that there
was no one else present to see how terrified I was.
I circled the field for several minutes, and gradually recovered
from the panic. At last I was sufficiently calm to come in for
a landing. Everything was all right. I took off immediately
and landed again. And a third time.
Tears were still in my eyes when I pushed open the canopy
and removed my helmet. When I jumped down from the
wing I found I could not control the shaking of my knees.
Suddenly I saw Kornatzky standing in front of me. Steely
blue eyes seemed to be boring right through me.
" Were you frightened? "
" Yes, sir."
" Better get used to it if you hope to go on operations."
That really hurt. I was so ashamed I wished the ground
would swallow me up.

XyZspineZyX
09-20-2003, 06:16 PM
cool story!

sounds like that spit was trying to take adv of the 109 heavy controls and force him to eat dirt.. Carson pointed out that they did that sometimes. This pilot was lucky.. even he saidI find that I am shivering. With rage and cold,

- besides reaction after that power dive, which
- was certainly no picnic.




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XyZspineZyX
09-20-2003, 08:48 PM
Great excerpts!
Really makes you understand these soldiers, and realize how far removed they were from these Nazi bastards that were pulling the strings.