27 December 1916|
Cloppenburg, Lower Saxony
|Died||20 October 1953
La Plata, Argentina
|Years of service||1936–1945|
|Unit||KG 30, KG 200|
|Commands held||5./KG 30, I./KG 30, KG 200|
|Battles/wars||World War II|
|Awards||Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves and Swords|
|Other work||Test pilot|
Werner Baumbach (December 27, 1916 – October 20, 1953) was a bomber pilot in the German Luftwaffe during World War II and commander of the secret bomber wing Kampfgeschwader 200 (KG 200). He received the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves and Swords (Ritterkreuz des Eisernen Kreuzes mit Eichenlaub und Schwertern) for the destruction of over 300,000 gross register tons (GRT) of allied shipping.
Born on December 27, 1916 in Cloppenburg, Baumbach entered the Luftwaffe in 1936 and was trained as a bomber pilot. He was one of the first pilots to fly the Junkers Ju 88 bomber and flew various bombing missions with Kampfgeschwader 30 (KG 30). On 19 April 1940 he bombed and damaged the French cruiser Émile Bertin for which he was awarded the Iron Cross 1st Class. In 1942, Baumbach was removed from active pilot duty and started working on new bomber designs; among others, he helped design the composite bomber system Mistel. In 1944, he was placed in command of the newly formed KG 200 and was in charge of all Luftwaffe special missions. Baumbach was promoted to Oberstleutnant on 15 November 1944 and was tasked with leading the affairs of the General der Kampfflieger.
After the war, Baumbach spent three years as a prisoner of war before he moved to Argentina where he worked as a test pilot. He died in a plane crash on 20 October 1953 while evaluating a British Lancaster bomber. He was interred in his hometown Cloppenburg.
Baumbach released his memoirs, Zu spät: Aufstieg und Untergang der deutschen Luftwaffe (English title: "Broken Swastika"), in the late 1940s. The book demonstrates that even after Germany's defeat, Baumbach still believed to a very large extent in the National Socialist ideology. The fact that Baumbach's time as commander of KG 200 is not mentioned with a single word highlights the extreme secrecy of Germany's special missions program.
- Narvik Shield
- Front Flying Clasp of the Luftwaffe for Bomber Pilots in Gold with Pennant "200"
- Pilot/Observer Badge in Gold with Diamonds (14 July 1941)
- Ehrenpokal der Luftwaffe
- Iron Cross (1939)
- Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves and Swords
- Mentioned twice in the Wehrmachtbericht
- According to Scherzer on 16 August 1942
- Berger 2000, p. 26.
- Schumann 2007, p. 19.
- Schumann 2007, p. 20.
- Scherzer 2007, p. 206.
- Fellgiebel 2000, p. 40.
- Berger, Florian (1999). Mit Eichenlaub und Schwertern. Die höchstdekorierten Soldaten des Zweiten Weltkrieges. Selbstverlag Florian Berger. ISBN 3-9501307-0-5.
- Fellgiebel, Walther-Peer (2000). Die Träger des Ritterkreuzes des Eisernen Kreuzes 1939-1945 (in German). Friedburg, Germany: Podzun-Pallas. ISBN 3-7909-0284-5.
- Kaiser, Jochen (2010). Die Ritterkreuzträger der Kampfflieger—Band 1 (in German and English). Bad Zwischenahn, Germany: Luftfahrtverlag-Start. ISBN 978-3-941437-07-4.
- Schaulen, Fritjof (2003). Eichenlaubträger 1940 - 1945 Zeitgeschichte in Farbe I Abraham - Huppertz (in German). Selent, Germany: Pour le Mérite. ISBN 3-932381-20-3.
- Schumann, Ralf (2007). Die Ritterkreuzträger 1939–1945 des LG 1 (in German). Zweibrücken, Germany: VDM Heinz Nickel. ISBN 978-3-86619-013-9.
- Thomas, Franz (1997). Die Eichenlaubträger 1939–1945 Band 1: A–K (in German). Osnabrück, Germany: Biblio-Verlag. ISBN 3-7648-2299-6.
- Williamson, Gordon Williamson and Bujeiro, Ramiro (2004). Knight's Cross and Oak-Leaves Recipients 1939-40 — Volume 114 of Elite Series. Osprey Publishing. ISBN 1-84176-641-0.
- Helden der Wehrmacht - Unsterbliche deutsche Soldaten (in German). München, Germany: FZ-Verlag GmbH, 2004. ISBN 3-924309-53-1.
- "Photo of Werner Baubach with Juan Perón". Retrieved 2010.
- Werner Baumbach in the German National Library catalogue
- "Ritterkreuzträger 1939-1945". Werner Baumbach. Retrieved 6 June 2007.
- "Lexikon der Wehrmacht". Werner Baumbach. Retrieved 6 June 2007.
- Werner Baumbach receiving the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross on YouTube
Oberst Heinz Heigl
|Commander of Kampfgeschwader 200
15 November 1944 – 6 March 1945
Major Adolf von Hernier