Heinz-Otto Schultze

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Heinz-Otto Schultze
A young man with a black uniform and an Iron Cross at his neck; his hair is combed back.
Heinz-Otto Schultze
Born (1915-09-13)13 September 1915
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South Atlantic
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Allegiance  Nazi Germany
Service/branch  Kriegsmarine
Years of service 1934–43
Rank Kapitänleutnant
Unit SSS Gorch Fock
light cruiser Karlsruhe
Commands held U-4
German submarine U-849
Battles/wars World War II 
Awards Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross
Relations Otto Schultze (father)

Heinz-Otto Schultze (13 September 1915 in Kiel – 25 November 1943 in the South Atlantic) was a German U-boat commander in World War II and recipient of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross (Ritterkreuz des Eisernen Kreuzes). The Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross was awarded to recognise extreme battlefield bravery or successful military leadership. He is credited with the sinking of 20 ships for a total of 67,991 gross register tons (GRT) plus damaging a further two ships for a total of 15,666 GRT.

Naval career

Heinz-Otto Schultze was the son of Otto Schultze, commander of U-63 during World War I and a recipient of the coveted Pour le Mérite and later Generaladmiral of the Kriegsmarine.[1]

Schultze joined the Reichsmarine on 8 April 1934 as a member of Crew 1934 (the incoming class of 1934) where he received his basic military infantry training with the II. Schiff-Stamm-Abteilung der Ostsee (2nd department of the standing ship division) of the Baltic Sea in Stralsund.[Notes 1] He was transferred to the school ship SSS Gorch Fock on 15 June 1934 for his on board training. Here he was promoted to Seekadett (Midshipman) on 26 September 1934. He then was transferred to the light cruiser Karlsruhe on 27 September 1934.[2]

U-849 under attack by a B-24 Liberator on 25 November 1943.

He transferred to the U boat service on 19 May 1937 and completed the U boat school. Schultze was first posted on board of U-31 on 30 March 1938, initially serving as a second watch officer. He was made first watch officer on board of U-31 on 6 November 1938 and promoted to Oberleutnant zur See (Sub-Lieutenant) on 1 April 1939. He received command of his first U boat, U-4, a school U boat, on 8 June 1940.[3]

Schultze was ordered to the Schichau-Werke, a shipyard in Danzig (now: Gdańsk, Poland), for construction familiarization of U-432. He commissioned U-432 on 26 April 1941. His first war patrol as a commander, his fifth of the war, lasted from 30 July until 19 September 1941 and resulted in the sinking of four ships totalling 10,774 GRT. Schultze surrendered command of U-432 on 16 January 1943 taking command of U-849 on 11 March 1943. His fifth patrol as a commander of U-432 targeted the East Coast of the United States of America. U-432 left La Pallice on 21 January 1942 and returned to La Pallice on 16 March 1942. During this patrol Schultze torpedoed and sank five ships for 25,107 GRT. After his return, Schultze was heavily criticized by the Befehlshaber der U-Boote (BdU) for the sinking of a Brazilian ship without warning. This attack was conducted against standing orders.[3]

U-849 left Kiel on its first war patrol on 2 October 1943 and was sunk by depth charges from a US B-24 Liberator B-6 from Navy-Squadron VB-107 on 25 November that year in the South Atlantic west of the Congo estuary, in position Lua error in Module:Coordinates at line 668: callParserFunction: function "#coordinates" was not found.. Schultze and the entire crew of U-849 were killed in the sinking. This was Schultze's 12th patrol of the war.[4]

Summary of career

Ships attacked

Date Name Nationality Tonnage
10 September 1941 Muneric  United Kingdom 5,229 Sunk
10 September 1941 Stargard  Norway 1,113 Sunk
10 September 1941 Winterswijk  Netherlands 3,205 Sunk
11 September 1941 Garm  Sweden 1,231 Sunk
17 October 1941 Barfonn  Norway 9,739 Sunk
17 October 1941 Bold Venture  Panama 3,222 Sunk
17 October 1941 Evros  Greece 5,283 Sunk
28 October 1941 Ulea  United Kingdom 1,574 Sunk
15 February 1942 Buarque 23x15px Brazil 5,172 Sunk
18 February 1942 Olinda 23x15px Brazil 4,053 Sunk
19 February 1942 Miraflores  United Kingdom 2,158 Sunk
21 February 1942 Azalea City  United States 5,529 Sunk
27 February 1942 Marore  United States 8,215 Sunk
17 May 1942 Foam  United States 324 Sunk
23 May 1942 Zurichmoor  United Kingdom 4,455 Sunk
31 May 1942 Liverpool Packet  Canada 1,188 Sunk
3 June 1942 Aeolus  United States 41 Sunk
3 June 1942 Ben and Josephine  United States 102 Sunk
9 June 1942 Kronprinsen  Norway 7,073 Damaged
9 June 1942 Malayan Prince  United Kingdom 8,593 Damaged
24 September 1942 Pennmar  United States 5,868 Sunk
17 December 1942 Poitou  Free France 310 Sunk



  1. The German Reichsmarine was renamed to Kriegsmarine on 1 June 1935.



  1. Huß & Viohl 2003, p. 263.
  2. Busch & Röll 2003, p. 231.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Busch & Röll 2003, p. 233.
  4. Busch & Röll 2003, pp. 232, 233.
  5. Helgason, Guðmundur. "Ships hit by U-432". German U-boats of WWII - uboat.net. Retrieved 23 March 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 Busch & Röll 2003, p. 232.
  7. Fellgiebel 2000, p. 392.


  • Busch, Rainer; Röll, Hans-Joachim (2003). Der U-Boot-Krieg 1939–1945 — Die Ritterkreuzträger der U-Boot-Waffe von September 1939 bis Mai 1945 (in German). Hamburg, Berlin, Bonn Germany: Verlag E.S. Mittler & Sohn. ISBN 978-3-8132-0515-2. Unknown parameter |trans_title= ignored (help)CS1 maint: unrecognized language (link)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Fellgiebel, Walther-Peer (2000). Die Träger des Ritterkreuzes des Eisernen Kreuzes 1939–1945 — Die Inhaber der höchsten Auszeichnung des Zweiten Weltkrieges aller Wehrmachtteile (in German). Friedberg, Germany: Podzun-Pallas. ISBN 978-3-7909-0284-6. Unknown parameter |trans_title= ignored (help)CS1 maint: unrecognized language (link)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Huß, Jürgen; Viohl, Armin (2003). Die Ritterkreuzträger des Eisernen Kreuzes der preußischen Provinz Schleswig-Holstein und der Freien und Hansestadt Lübeck 1939–1945 (in German). Zweibrücken, Germany: VDM Heinz Nickel. ISBN 978-3-925480-79-9. Unknown parameter |trans_title= ignored (help)CS1 maint: unrecognized language (link)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Kurowski, Franz (1995). Knight's Cross Holders of the U-Boat Service. Atglen, PA: Schiffer Publishing. ISBN 978-0-88740-748-2.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Range, Clemens (1974). Die Ritterkreuzträger der Kriegsmarine. Stuttgart, Germany: Motorbuch Verlag. ISBN 978-3-87943-355-1. Unknown parameter |trans_title= ignored (help)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Scherzer, Veit (2007). Die Ritterkreuzträger 1939–1945 Die Inhaber des Ritterkreuzes des Eisernen Kreuzes 1939 von Heer, Luftwaffe, Kriegsmarine, Waffen-SS, Volkssturm sowie mit Deutschland verbündeter Streitkräfte nach den Unterlagen des Bundesarchives (in German). Jena, Germany: Scherzers Miltaer-Verlag. ISBN 978-3-938845-17-2. Unknown parameter |trans_title= ignored (help)CS1 maint: unrecognized language (link)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

External links

  • Helgason, Guðmundur. "Heinz-Otto Schultze". German U-boats of WWII - uboat.net. Retrieved 6 April 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
Military offices
Preceded by
Kapitänleutnant Hans-Peter Hinsch
Commanding officer, U-4
8 June 1940 – 28 July 1940
Succeeded by
Kapitänleutnant Hans-Jürgen Zetzsche
First Commanding officer, U-141
21 August 1940 – 30 March 1941
Succeeded by
Kapitänleutnant Philip Schüler
First Commanding officer, U-432
26 April 1941 – 15 January 1943
Succeeded by
Kapitänleutnant Hermann Eckhardt
First Commanding officer, U-849
11 March 1943 – 25 November 1941
Ship sunk