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Wilhelm-Ferdinand Galland
Nickname Wutz
Born (1914-10-23)23 October 1914
Died 17 August 1943(1943-08-17) (aged 28)
Place of birth Bochum
Place of death west of Maastricht in the Netherlands
Buried at Lommel, Belgium
(Block 21-grave 290)
Allegiance Nazi Germany Nazi Germany
Service/branch Balkenkreuz.svg Luftwaffe
Years of service 1935–1943
Rank Major
Unit JG 26
Commands held II./JG 26 "Schlageter"

World War II

Awards Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross
Relations Adolf Galland
Paul Galland

Wilhelm-Ferdinand "Wutz" Galland (born 23 October 1914 in Bochum – killed in action 17 August 1943) was a German Luftwaffe fighter ace and recipient of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross. He is credited with 55 aerial victories in achieved in 186 combat missions. All his victories were claimed over the Western Front and included seven four-engine bombers and 37 Supermarine Spitfires.

Wilhelm-Ferdinand Galland was one of four Galland brothers to serve in the Luftwaffe. The oldest brother Fritz Galland served in a fighter and reconnaissance unit and survived the war. His older brother, Lt. Gen. Adolf Galland was one the most renowned German fighter pilots and leader of German fighter operations and also survived the war. His youngest brother Paul Galland, a flying ace with 17 victories, served with JG 26 and was killed in action on 31 October 1942.

Galland scored his first victory on 23 July 1941, shooting down a Spitfire near Hesdin. By the end of 1941 his victory total was three. On 5 May 1942 Galland was promoted to Staffelkapitän of 5./JG 26, with eight victories at the time. His score was 21 by the end of 1942. Hpt. Galland was appointed Gruppenkommandeur of II./JG 26 in January 1943. Galland was awarded the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross in May 1943 for 35 victories.

Galland was killed in action on 17 August 1943 during the Schweinfurt-Regensburg mission. II./JG 26 took off on a bomber intercept mission and engaged the B-17 bomber formation but were bounced by the escorting P-47 fighters from the 56th Fighter Group, USAAF. It is assumed that Galland was shot down by the American ace Walker "Bud" Mahurin of the 56th Fighter Group, USAAF.



  1. Obermaier 1989, p. 117.
  2. Fellgiebel 2000, p. 191.
  • Fellgiebel, Walther-Peer (2000). Die Träger des Ritterkreuzes des Eisernen Kreuzes 1939-1945. Friedburg, Germany: Podzun-Pallas. ISBN 3-7909-0284-5.
  • Obermaier, Ernst (1989). Die Ritterkreuzträger der Luftwaffe Jagdflieger 1939 - 1945 (in German). Mainz, Germany: Verlag Dieter Hoffmann. ISBN 3-87341-065-6.
  • 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 (in German). Jena, Germany: Scherzers Miltaer-Verlag. ISBN 978-3-938845-17-2.
  • Spick, Mike (1996). Luftwaffe Fighter Aces. New York: Ivy Books. ISBN 0-8041-1696-2.

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