Messerschmitt Bf 109 G-10/AS


Black 21, W.Nr. 610783, flown by an unknown pilot with 6./JG 52, Zeltweg/Austria to Neubiberg/Germany, 8 May 1945

Hauptmann Wilhelm "Willi" Batz, the Kommandeur of II./JG 52, was able to extricate his Gruppe from Hungary and to return to the Reich, more specifically Austria. The Allies however, were closing in and entered Austria during April of 1945, with the 11th US Armor Division advancing from the north and the Soviet 2nd and 3rd Ukrainian Front from the east.

With the hard-pressed German defenders staring down the barrel, II./JG 52, now based at Wien-Aspen found themselves right in the path of the Soviets. Here they flew fighter sweeps and escort missions for Ju 87 Stukas and Hs 129s. The enemy often appeared in large numbers of up to 30 machines, resulting in few claims and higher losses though most losses were due to accidents. Wien-Aspen's concrete landing-strip was unfamiliar to the Eastern Front flyers of JG 52 accustomed to grass fields, resulting in 13 damaged machines.

As the Soviets approached Vienna, the Gruppe was forced to move to Seyring and a few days later to Fels am Wagram. Here II./JG 52 was based over a week, flying an increasing number of mi

ssions, mostly fighter sweeps and escorts for Schlachtgruppen Fw 190s but also conducting its own strafing sorties. After a move to Brünn, the unit was soon back in Fels am Wagram. Then they were called to the north where US forces were advancing and were therefore based at Hörsching, 12 km southwest of Linz on 17 April. Here the pilots conducted the same type of missions as before, although in some instances their Bf 109s were loaded with up with four 50 kg bombs to attack tanks and trucks.

The Gruppe's last claim was filed on 24 April, when Lt. Düttmann destroyed a Sherman tank 5 km southwest of Chan. This victory was to be filed as Düttman's 151st, included in the 3,530 total Abschüsse for II./JG 52. Thereafter the Gruppe relocated another three times finally ending up in Zeltweg where JG 52's personnel learned of the Wehrmacht's unconditional surrender.

To avoid falling into Soviet hands the order was given to fly all aircraft over to US-held territory. The remainder of the unit was to travel by road in an effort to surrender to the "right" enemy. The remnants of the Gruppe finally landed at Neubiberg air base just south of München.

By making this last flight Major Batz and his Gruppe were thus able to elude Soviet captivity and were the only unit within JG 52 to do so. The camouflage finish of this G-10/AS had an upper surface segmented camouflage scheme consisting of RLM 75 and RLM 74. Note the yellow Luftflotte 4 recognition marking on the rudder and front part of the engine cowling, a remnant from the battles over Hungary.

This is one of the 130 profiles subjects that would be included in my upcoming Profile book No 15.

This is one of 130 profiles that is to be include in the future Profile Book No 15

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