U-99 was Commanded by Kapt Lt Otto Kretschmer ('Silent Otto') - a very famous U-Boat and Skipper.
U-99 Type VII B Launched 12 March 1940 Commissioned 18 April 1940
Commander (only one) Kapitanleutnant Otto Kretschmer (POW)
Sunk 17 March 1941 at sea approx position 61 00 N 12 30 W North of the Hebrides in the Atlantic Ocean.
Cause of Loss Depth Charge attack by Surface Units
3 KIA 40 POWs
U-99 was undertaking yet another Convoy Surface Attack at Night (the Boats Commanders Preferred method of attack), this time targeting Convoy HX-112. One of the RN Destroyer Escorts HMS Walker was in the process of recovering survivors after ramming and sinking U-100 (Kapt Lt Joachim Schepke KIA with 38 of his crew - also another U-Boat 'Experten' - Ace), when a lookout on board U-99 Sighted the Destroyer.
A newly appointed Bridge Officer who had the watch duty, inadvertently gave the order for an 'alarm tauch' (crash dive) - in error. This was a major mistake tactically at this point in the war, as Otto Kretschmer well knew, as the Type VII Boats best method of evasion in these pre RDF (ie RN RADAR) days was to remain surfaced and use their higher surface speed and low silhouette, combined with their more manoeuvrable turns at high speed to evade attack - something Otto Kretschmer had done many times before.
Shortly after submerging U-99 was detected by HMS Walker's ASDIC Equipment (another reason for remaining surfaced ), and almost at once came under Depth Charge attack by HMS Walker. At 0320 unable to evade any longer due to his batteries being almost exhausted, and with his crew suffering from the combined effects of CO2 poisoning and leaks inside the boat, the order was given to surface and then scuttle the boat.
This was successfully completed with only minimal losses.
All 3 U-Boat Aces assigned to attack this Convoy were sunk -
U-47 Kapt Lt Gunther Prien - 45 Killed (All Hands) Awarded Knights Cross - 18 Oct 1939 Awarded Oak Leaves - 20 Oct 1940
U-100 Kapt Lt Joachim Schepke - 38 Killed (only 1 Officer and 5 Ratings Survived as POWs). Awarded Knights Cross - 24 September 1940 Awarded Oak Leaves 1 December 1940.
(Details on U-99s emblems and markings will follow - in case you wish to add some more detail to this superb artwork).
DOB 1 May 1912 Heidau Liegnitz
Course - Class of 1930
Final Rank Fregattenkapitan (1 September 1944 while a POW in Canada).
U-Boat Training School January - April 1936 Company Officer 2 Company U-Boat School May - October 1936
Watch Officer U-Boat Flotilla 'Saltzwedel' (also) May - October 1936
Baubelehrung (Assigned to a new U-Boat under construction) Located at Germaniawerft Kiel October - November 1936
Eins Wachoffizier (WO1) U-35 November 1936 - September 1937 (Acting Commander during August 1937 after Commander of Boat was killed in a motor vehicle accident at Augsburg on 30 July 1937 (Kapt Lt Hermann Michahelles), until being relived of his command by the arrival of Kapt Lt Werner Lott (POW Nov 1939 also in Canada, U-35 Sunk by RN Surface Units, all of the crew survived) later the same month.
U-23 Commander October 1937 - April 1940
Baubelehrung U-BoatsOst (East) April 1940
Commander U-99 April 1940 - March 1941 (Sunk)
POW Canada and UK 1941 - 1947
Awarded Knights Cross 4 August 1940 (7th U-Boat Commander to be decorated in war)
Awarded Oak Leaves 4 November 1940 (2nd U-Boat Commander to be Decorated in War)
Awarded Swords (while a POW) 26 December 1941 (1st U-Boat Commander to be Decorated in war)
Taken From -
U-Boats Destroyed 1914 - 1945 by Paul Kemp
German U-Boat Commanders of WW2 By Rainer Busch and Hans-Joachim Roll.
Imagine this, patrolling in rough seas searching for merchant ship, running slow underwater while being bombed with depth charges from the surface. Damn, those men was so brave. This is the reason I love WW2 subs.
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