JG54West 40Aug16

August 16, 1940

1150 – 1240 Hours

The 109's of III Gruppe took the air once again to escort bombers to Kent.  It was but a small part of an overall effort of 100+ aircraft that would spit up into sub-groups and range over Kent to various targets.  All of 11 Group rose to the challenge and scrambled all available fighters.

No. 266 (Rhodesia) Squadron was heavily engaged and saw its 10 Spitfires, originally tasked to patrol over Manston, scattered across the countryside in various engagements.  S/Lt Henry Greenshields spotted a group of Messerschmitts headed back to France.  The 109's turned out to be from 9./JG 54.  Greenshields boldly followed the group of enemy aircraft over the Straits of Dover.  Near Calais, Greenshields managed to overtake one of the Bf 109E's and shot it down.

This attack didn't go unnoticed.  Greenshields Spitfire was attacked by the 109 of Oberleutnant Hans-Ekkehard Bob.  Christer Bergstrom's Battle of Britain: An Epic Conflict Revisited picks up what happened next: "Although his Spitfire was shot to pieces by bursts from Bob's Bf 109, Greenshields refused to bail out - this would have meant that his aircraft would have crashed among the houses of Calais.  Instead, he steered away and crashed into a canal outside the town, which cost him his life.  Bob and the other airmen of 9./JG 54 afterwards went to the crash site and formed a guard of honour..."

Henry Greenshields shot down Uffz. Gustav Kuhlmann, who was wounded but died twelve days later.

III Gruppe Verlustliste: (Kuhlmann's entry for this date is N.N. on the Rosipal Loss List)

DATUM MUSTER WNR STKZ TF TK STAT ORT NAME VORNAME RANG LS AZ VERB UMST1 UMST2 UMST3 SCH1
8/16/40 Bf109E-4 ? ? ? 100% Calais Kuhlmann Gustav Uffz. ? ? 9. LK Spitfire No. 266 - Greenshields verm.

 

Sources:

Christer Bergstrom / Claes Sundin, Hans-Ekkehard Bob (Ace Profile 1: The Men and Their Machines).

Christer Bergstrom / Claes Sundin, Max Hellmuth Ostermann (Ace Profile 2: The Men and Their Machines).
Christer Bergstrom, The Battle of Britain: An Epic Conflict Revised.

Nigel Parker, Battle of Britain Combat Archive: Volume 3.
Battle-of-Britain-Diary.org.uk.

Gunther Rosipal – JG 54 Loss List.

Tony Wood – Luftwaffe Aerial Claims.
Jerry Scutts, Jagdgeschwader 54: Aces of the Eastern Front.
Werner Held, Hannes Trautloft, Hans-Ekkehard Bob, JG 54: A Photographic History of the Grunherzjager.