Willy Kientsch

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Willy Kientsch
Nickname(s) "Willy"
Born 12 May 1921
Kißlegg
Died 29 January 1944(1944-01-29) (aged 22)
Würrich
Allegiance  Nazi Germany
Service/branch Balkenkreuz (Iron Cross) Luftwaffe
Years of service 1940–44
Rank Oberleutnant
Unit JG 27
Battles/wars

World War II

Awards Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves

Wilhelm "Willy" Kientsch (12 May 1921 – 29 January 1944) was a Luftwaffe ace and recipient of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves during World War II. The Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross and its higher grade Oak Leaves was awarded to recognise extreme battlefield bravery or successful military leadership. He was killed on 29 January 1944 when he became disorientated in Messerschmitt Bf 109 G6 "Yellow 3" (Werknummer 440 073—factory number) in a low cloud cover near Würrich, Germany and struck the ground and was killed. Kientsch claimed 53 victories all over the Western Front. He was posthumously awarded the Oak Leaves to his Knight's Cross on 20 July 1944.

Summary of career[edit]

Aerial victory claims[edit]

Kientsch was credited with 53 enemy aircraft shot down, 16 of which in North Africa, 25 in Sicily and 12 in defense of the Reich. His 53 aerial victories includes 20 four-engined bombers.[1]

  This along with the * (asterisk) indicates an Herausschuss (separation shot)—a severely damaged heavy bomber forced to separate from his combat box which was counted as an aerial victory.

Chronicle of aerial victories
Victory Date Time Type Location Unit Victory Date Time Type Location Unit
– Claims with II. Gruppe of Jagdgeschwader 27 –[2]
In North Africa — April 1941 – December 1942
1 18 March 1942 08:20 P-40 15 km (9.3 mi) southwest Ain el Gazala Stab II./JG 77 9 21 July 1942 18:20 Hurricane southeast El Alamein 5./JG 77
2 18 March 1942 08:40 P-40 10 km (6.2 mi) southeast Tobruk Stab II./JG 77 10 20 October 1942 11:40 P-40 southeast Bir el Abd 5./JG 77
3 7 April 1942 15:45 P-40 south Ain el Gazala 6./JG 77 11 21 October 1942 08:50 P-40 southeast El Dabaa 5./JG 77
4 23 May 1942 09:40 P-40 10 km (6.2 mi) north Ras el Tin Stab II./JG 77 12 23 October 1942 07:55 P-40 northeast El Alamein 5./JG 77
5 23 May 1942 09:55 P-40 3 km (1.9 mi) northeast Ain el Gazala Stab II./JG 77 13 24 October 1942 16:40 P-40 southeast El Alamein 5./JG 77
6 4 June 1942 08:20 P-40 10 km (6.2 mi) southwest Mteifel Chebir Stab II./JG 77 14 26 October 1942 06:40 P-40 southwest El Alamein 5./JG 77
7 9 June 1942 19:05 P-40 northeast Bir Hacheim Stab II./JG 77 15 18 November 1942 09:20 P-40 east-northeast Sidi Ahmed el Magrun 5./JG 77
8 17 June 1942 10:25 P-40 east Sidi Rezegh Stab II./JG 77 16 27 November 1942 15:25 Spitfire 15 km (9.3 mi) southwest Ajdabiya 5./JG 77
– Claims with II. Gruppe of Jagdgeschwader 27 –[3]
Sicily, Tunisia and Italy — February – July 1943
17 5 April 1943 12:50 P-38 35 km (22 mi) west Marettimo 6./JG 77 30 9 June 1943 14:10 P-38 20 km (12 mi) south Pantelleria 6./JG 77
18 13 April 1943 13:30 B-17 10 km (6.2 mi) north Trapani 6./JG 77 31 10 June 1943 12:28 Spitfire 10 km (6.2 mi) northwest Pantelleria 6./JG 77
19 16 April 1943 16:45 P-38 30 km (19 mi) north-northwest Marettimo 6./JG 77 32 10 June 1943 12:32 Spitfire 20 km (12 mi) west-southwest Pantelleria 6./JG 77
20 16 April 1943 16:55 P-38 60 km (37 mi) northwest Marettimo 6./JG 77 33 15 June 1943 08:40 B-25 30 km (19 mi) southwest Marettimo 6./JG 77
21 29 April 1943 11:35 P-38 25 km (16 mi) west Marettimo 6./JG 77 34 15 June 1943 08:45 P-38 40 km (25 mi) south Marettimo 6./JG 77
22 30 April 1943 10:30 Spitfire 30 km (19 mi) southeast Kelibia 6./JG 77 35 15 June 1943 10:15 Spitfire 1 km (0.62 mi) north Marettimo 6./JG 77
23 9 May 1943 13:45 B-17 west-northwest Trapani 6./JG 77 36 2 July 1943 11:30 B-24 20 km (12 mi) southwest Gallipoli 6./JG 77
24 21 May 1943 11:20 B-17 south-southwest Granitola Torretta 6./JG 77 37 10 July 1943 16:05 Spitfire 15 km (9.3 mi) east Syracuse 6./JG 77
25 22 May 1943 16:00 B-17 southwest Marettimo 6./JG 77 38 13 July 1943 15:35 Spitfire 20 km (12 mi) southwest Syracuse 6./JG 77
26 25 May 1943 11:30 B-17 northwest Marettimo 6./JG 77 39 16 July 1943 13:10 B-24 5 km (3.1 mi) northeast Molfetta 6./JG 77
27 28 May 1943 18:10 P-38 south-southwest Granitola Torretta 6./JG 77 40 17 July 1943 14:10 B-24 30 km (19 mi) southwest Salerno 6./JG 77
28 28 May 1943 18:13 P-38 south-southwest Granitola Torretta 6./JG 77 41 19 July 1943 11:00 B-24 100 km (62 mi) south Spartivento 6./JG 77
29 9 June 1943 14:02 P-38 northeast Pantelleria 6./JG 77
– Claims with II. Gruppe of Jagdgeschwader 27 –[4]
Defense of the Reich — September 1943 – January 1944
42 6 September 1943 10:53 B-17 southeast Schorndorf 6./JG 77 48* 19 December 1943 12:32 B-17 80 km (50 mi) south-southeast Innsbruck 6./JG 77
43 6 September 1943 11:00 B-17 south-southwest Böblingen 6./JG 77 49* 19 December 1943 12:35 B-17 80 km (50 mi) south-southeast Innsbruck 6./JG 77
44 4 October 1943 11:42 B-17 Valmy 6./JG 77 50 20 December 1943 12:05 B-24 northwest Bremen 6./JG 77
45 26 November 1943 13:30 B-17 Duurswoude 6./JG 77 51 5 January 1944
P-47 6./JG 77
46 26 November 1943 13:35 B-24 southeast Leeuwarden 6./JG 77 52 7 January 1944 12:20 B-17 Neunkirchen 6./JG 77
47 1 December 1943 12:20 B-17 Bonn 6./JG 77 53 11 January 1944 12:12 B-24 east Assen 6./JG 77

Awards[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ According to Scherzer as pilot in the II./Jagdgeschwader 27.[8]

References[edit]

Citations[edit]

Bibliography[edit]

  • 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. 
  • Patzwall, Klaus D.; Scherzer, Veit (2001). Das Deutsche Kreuz 1941 – 1945 Geschichte und Inhaber Band II [The German Cross 1941 – 1945 History and Recipients Volume 2] (in German). Norderstedt, Germany: Verlag Klaus D. Patzwall. ISBN 978-3-931533-45-8. 
  • Patzwall, Klaus D. (2008). Der Ehrenpokal für besondere Leistung im Luftkrieg [The Honor Goblet for Outstanding Achievement in the Air War] (in German). Norderstedt, Germany: Verlag Klaus D. Patzwall. ISBN 978-3-931533-08-3. 
  • Prien, Jochen; Rodeike, Peter; Stemmer, Gerhard (1997). Messerschmidt Bf 109 im Einsatz bei II./Jagdgeschwader 27, 1940 – 1945 [Messerschmidt Bf 109 in Action with I./Jagdgeschwader 27, 1940 – 1945] (in German). Eutin, Germany: Struve-Druck. ISBN 978-3-923457-42-7. 
  • 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. 
  • Spick, Mike (1996). Luftwaffe Fighter Aces. New York: Ivy Books. ISBN 978-0-8041-1696-1. 
  • Thomas, Franz (1997). Die Eichenlaubträger 1939–1945 Band 1: A–K [The Oak Leaves Bearers 1939–1945 Volume 1: A–K] (in German). Osnabrück, Germany: Biblio-Verlag. ISBN 978-3-7648-2299-6.