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Wilhelm Lemke
Wilhelm Lemke
Born (1920-09-27)27 September 1920
Died December 4, 1943(1943-12-04) (aged 23)
Place of birth Arnswalde
Place of death near Dodewaard, Netherlands
Buried at Ysselsteyn, Netherlands
(Block CW—Row 1—Grave 24)
Allegiance Nazi Germany Nazi Germany
Service/branch Balkenkreuz.svg Luftwaffe
Years of service 1939 – 1943
Rank Hauptmann
Unit JG 3
Commands held 9./JG 3

World War II

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

Wilhelm Lemke (27 September 1920 – 4 December 1943) was a Luftwaffe flying ace of World War II. Lemke was credited with 131 aerial victories—that is, 131 aerial combat encounters resulting in the destruction of the enemy aircraft. All but six of his victories were claimed over the Soviet Air Forces in over 700 combat missions.[1] (German language: Ritterkreuz des Eisernen Kreuzes mit Eichenlaub). 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. Lemke was killed in action with United States Army Air Forces (USAAF) fighters on 4 December 1943.

Military career

Wilhelm Lemke was born on 27 September 1920 in Gundelsdorf near Arnswalde, today Choszczno in Poland, then in the Free State of Prussia of the Weimar Republic. He joined the military service of the Luftwaffe as a Fahnenjunker (cadet) in November 1939.[2]

Lemke was killed in action on 4 December 1943 at Dodewaard, 18 kilometres (11 mi) west Nijmegen. He was shot down by P-47 Thunderbolts of the 352nd Fighter Group, United States Army Air Forces (USAAF).



  1. According to Scherzer on 19 September 1942 as pilot in the 8./Jagdgeschwader 3 "Udet".[6]
  2. According to Scherzer as Staffelkapitän in the III./Jagdgeschwader 3 "Udet".[6]


  1. Spick 1996, p. 230.
  2. Obermaier 1989, p. 59.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Thomas 1998, p. 21.
  4. Patzwall 2008, p. 134.
  5. Fellgiebel 2000, p. 288.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Scherzer 2007, p. 501.
  7. Fellgiebel 2000, p. 75.
  • Fellgiebel, Walther-Peer (2000). Die Träger des Ritterkreuzes des Eisernen Kreuzes 1939-1945 (in German). 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.
  • Patzwall, Klaus D. (2008). Der Ehrenpokal für besondere Leistung im Luftkrieg (in German). Norderstedt, Germany: Verlag Klaus D. Patzwall. ISBN 978-3-931533-08-3.
  • 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.
  • Thomas, Franz (1998). Die Eichenlaubträger 1939–1945 Band 2: L–Z (in German). Osnabrück, Germany: Biblio-Verlag. ISBN 3-7648-2300-3.
  • Weal, John (1999). Bf 109F/G/K Aces of the Western Front. Osprey Publishing. ISBN 1-85532-905-0.
  • Weal, John (2011). Fw 190 Defence of the Reich Aces. Oxford, UK: Osprey Publishing Limited. ISBN 978-1-84603-482-4.

External links

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