Helmut Bergmann

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Helmut Bergmann
Born 26 May 1920
Bochum
Died 6 August 1944(1944-08-06) (aged 24)
Mortain, France
Buried at German War Cemetery Marigny
Allegiance  Nazi Germany
Service/branch Luftwaffe
Years of service ?–1944
Rank Hauptmann
Unit NJG 4, NJG 1
Commands held 8./Nachtjagdgeschwader 4
Battles/wars World War II
Awards Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross

Helmut Bergmann (26 May 1920 – 6 August 1944) was a German Luftwaffe night fighter ace and recipient of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross during World War II. The Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross was awarded to recognise extreme battlefield bravery or successful military leadership. Bergmann claimed 36 nocturnal aerial victories in 135 combat missions.[Note 1]

Career

Bergmann was born in 1920 in Bochum. He joined the Luftwaffe in May 1940 and after completing pilot training in July 1941, he was assigned to the Ergänzungsstaffel (Training/Supplement Squadron) of Nachtjagdgeschwader 1 (NJG 1—1st Night Fighter Wing). He was then assigned to 8./Nachtjagdgeschwader 4 (NJG 4—4th Night Fighter Wing) in early 1942. Promoted Staffelkapitän of 7./NJG 4 in April 1944, Bergmann shot down seven Lancasters in 46 minutes on the night of 10/11 April 1944, all from an RAF Bomber Command raid on the Aulnoye-Aymeries rail marshalling yard on the Franco-Belgian frontier. 38 Allied aircrew were killed. This was Bergmann's most successful sortie. He was transferred to 6./NJG 4 in May and on 9 June 1944 he received the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross for achieving 30 victories.

Four months later Bergmann and his crew - radar operator Feldwebel Gunter Hauthal and gunner Feldwebel Willie Schopp - were shot down and killed in Messerschmitt Bf 110 G-4 (Werknummer 140320—factory number) on the night of 6/7 August 1944 at Mortain on the Cotentin Peninsula. Flight Lieutenant John Surman, flying a Mosquito of No. 604 Squadron RAF, may have shot them down as he claimed a Bf 110 destroyed. However, friendly fire from the 1st SS Leibstandarte Panzer division who were launching Operation Lüttich, the counterattack at Mortain may have been responsible.[1]

Awards

See also

  • Wilhelm Herget - claimed eight RAF bombers in just 50 minutes during a raid against Frankfurt on the night of 20 December 1943.

Notes

  1. For a list of Luftwaffe night fighter aces see List of German World War II night fighter aces.

References

Citations

  1. Perilous Moon: Occupied France, 1944 - The End Game. Author Stuart Nimmo, Casemate Publications 2012, www.Perilous-Moon.com
  2. Patzwall & Scherzer 2001, p. 37.
  3. Fellgiebel 2000, p. 111.

Bibliography

  • Fellgiebel, Walther-Peer (2000) [1986]. 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>
  • Obermaier, Ernst (1989). Die Ritterkreuzträger der Luftwaffe Jagdflieger 1939 – 1945 (in German). Mainz, Germany: Verlag Dieter Hoffmann. ISBN 978-3-87341-065-7. Unknown parameter |trans_title= ignored (help)CS1 maint: unrecognized language (link)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Patzwall, Klaus D.; Scherzer, Veit (2001). Das Deutsche Kreuz 1941 – 1945 Geschichte und Inhaber Band II (in German). Norderstedt, Germany: Verlag Klaus D. Patzwall. ISBN 978-3-931533-45-8. Unknown parameter |trans_title= ignored (help)CS1 maint: unrecognized language (link)<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>
  • Spick, Mike (1996). Luftwaffe Fighter Aces. New York: Ivy Books. ISBN 978-0-8041-1696-1.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Nimmo Stuart (2012) "Perilous Moon:Occupied France, 1944 - The End Game". Philadelphia & Oxford: Casemate Publication. ISBN 978-1-61200-124-1

External links