Gerhard Friedrich

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Gerhard Friedrich
Nickname(s) Gerd
Born 16 September 1917
Johannisthal (Berlin), Germany
Died 16 March 1945 (1945-03-17) (aged 27)
Stuttgart, Germany
Allegiance  Nazi Germany
Service/branch Balkenkreuz (Iron Cross) Luftwaffe
Years of service 1939–45
Rank Major
Unit NJG 1, NJG 4, NJG 6

World War II

Awards Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross

Gerhard "Gerd" Friedrich (16 September 1917 – 16 March 1945) was a German Luftwaffe fighter ace of World War II. He was one of night fighter ace scored 33 victories. All of his victories were recorded at night.

Friedrich started his career as a transport pilot. Then he transferred to Luftwaffe and participated in the invasion of Crete. Then He received training as a night fighter pilot and began his night-fighting era when he was posted to III./NJG 1 at the beginning of 1942. Friedrich claimed his first victory on the night of 16/17 June when he shot down a Royal Air Force (RAF) Wellington.[Note 1] Friedrich was awarded the Ritterkreuz on 15 March 1945.

On the night of 16/17 March 1945, Friedrich collided with the Lancaster PB785 from No. 576 Squadron RAF, piloted by Flight Lieutenant Frank Edmund Dotten, near Stuttgart. Friedrich and his crew of three were killed in their Ju 88 G-6 along with the seven crew members of the British bomber.[1]



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



  1. ^ Bowman 2016.
  2. ^ Fellgiebel 2000, p. 187.
  3. ^ Scherzer 2007, p. 320.


  • Bowman, Martin (2016). German Night Fighters Versus Bomber Command 1943–1945. Barnsley, South Yorkshire: Pen and Sword Aviation. ISBN 978-1-4738-4979-2. 
  • Fellgiebel, Walther-Peer (2000) [1986]. Die Träger des Ritterkreuzes des Eisernen Kreuzes 1939–1945 — Die Inhaber der höchsten Auszeichnung des Zweiten Weltkrieges aller Wehrmachtteile [The Bearers of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross 1939–1945 — The Owners of the Highest Award of the Second World War of all Wehrmacht Branches] (in German). Friedberg, Germany: Podzun-Pallas. ISBN 978-3-7909-0284-6. 
  • Obermaier, Ernst (1989). Die Ritterkreuzträger der Luftwaffe Jagdflieger 1939 – 1945 [The Knight's Cross Bearers of the Luftwaffe Fighter Force 1939 – 1945] (in German). Mainz, Germany: Verlag Dieter Hoffmann. ISBN 978-3-87341-065-7. 
  • 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 [The Knight's Cross Bearers 1939–1945 The Holders of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross 1939 by Army, Air Force, Navy, Waffen-SS, Volkssturm and Allied Forces with Germany According to the Documents of the Federal Archives] (in German). Jena, Germany: Scherzers Militaer-Verlag. ISBN 978-3-938845-17-2.