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Mission: Shipping targets in English Channel.

Date: 20th May 1942

Time: 11.10 hours.

Unit: 10 (Jabo) Staffel./Jagdgeschwader 26

Type: Messerschmitt Bf 109F-4/B


Coded: 11 + (White)

Location: Beachy Head, Sussex, England.

Pilot: Unteroffizier Oswald Fischer – POW. Born 15.12.1919 in Erfurt.


Started from St Omer / Fort Rouge along with another aircraft to attack shipping and harbour installations at Newhaven, they crossed the French Coast at Le Touquet and made directly to the target with this aircraft was the leader of the pair almost at sea level. While circling Newhaven harbour the pilot sighted shipping, escorted by corvettes to the south west and dived to attack, followed by his wingman. The aircraft whilst making a bombing attack on a light naval auxiliary vessel released his bomb which struck the water next to the vessel before bouncing over it and was hit by machine gun fire in the oil radiator from below and ahead, the pilot turned towards land and made a very successful belly landing, little damage being done to the airframe.

The engine however was damaged by overheating, the water jacket having blown out on the starboard cylinder block. The pilot also emptied the contents of his pistol into the engine of the aircraft before surrendering although he forced landed knowing that the British already had an intact Messerschmitt Me 109 F. Markings: 11+, the figure 11 being in white with black outline. Immediately behind the German Cross a silver bomb was outlined in black and pointing downwards at an angle of 45º on each side of the fuselage. The spinner was black and the lower portion of the engine cowling and rudder were painted bright yellow. In the previous month this pilot had made forty-six War Flights against England when the targets had been Folkestone and Deal Railway stations, Hawkinge aerodrome, a colliery near Deal, barracks at Dungeness and some ships off Brighton. One day he had carried out three operations to Folkestone.

20.05.42 Me 109F Uffz Fischer
Oswald Fischer in flight overalls shortly after his forced-landing at Beachy Head (Brownless)

On the 21.08.43 the aircraft was delivered to No.1426 (Enemy Aircraft Flight). One of the cylinder blocks was damaged in the Beachy Head landing, but a replacement was obtained from the Middle East. F/Lt R. F. Forbes flew the aircraft at Collyweston on the 24th October, still in Luftwaffe markings. Three days later it had been painted in RAF colours and given the serial NN644, but it retained white 11 and bomb symbol. The aircrafts port wing and aileron where damaged when it ground looped on landing at Thurleigh, Bedfordshire on the 07.01.44. The Messerschmitt passed to the Enemy Aircraft Flight at Tangmere on 31.01.45, and went into store at No.47 MU (Maintenance Unit) Sealand on 01.11.45.


Researched and compiled by Melvin Brownless with thanks to Oswald Fischer, Nigel Parker, updated August 2013.