floes. Nearby were Allied vessels, which had
come into play and began to honour the Germans with a nasty and dense barrage of their
Bofors. Although reluctantly, the two German
airmen packed up for home in their Wunderwaffen.
Luukkanen was in the worst situation after
the fight. His aircraftperformance was decreasing and it was very difficult to control. „I‘ll
have to land on the water!“
„Good luck Eikka!“
„Thanks, Bunny. It‘ll be like home after the
sauna. No worries!“
Finn landed his Tempest expertly on the water. His mae vest inflated immediately and
the lifeboat quickly filled with air too. Everyone was relieved to have the Finnish colleague
in the raft.
But no one expected a group of killer whales,
which started to show great interest in the
boat. Luukkanen had to use his gun to scare
them off, but they were soon back.
It was getting serious, the curious cetaceans
tried to capsize the boat first and then one of
them just bit through it. So Luukkanen ended up back in the water, trying to get to the
nearest floe as quickly as possible. He succeeded, but the killer whales kept attacking. They
must have mistaken the man in the suit for
a seal. They even jumped up on the ice pack
to tilt it and knock their prey down. Luukkanen stuck his knife into the crust to keep himself from sliding down.
It was clear to Kleinkönnig that rescue, in
the form of a torpedo boat, was coming too
slowly, so he decided to intervene. He started
shooting at the killer whales. If he‘d fought
giant man-eating penguins in the past, why
not killer whales... The group of hungry marine mammals were spooked by the gunfire
and retreated to a distance,still waiting attentively.
But the boat crew soon picked up the pilot
and returned him to the aircraft carrier, cold,
wrapped in blankets and with a cup of rum.
He complained that he had not been given
enough coffee. One or two sailors asked him
to sign a newspaper with his picture on it.
In the evening Squadron Leader Sheddan
nodded his head in acknowledgement. „So
from today on, you have the nickname „Lucky“ Luukkanen! And you, Kleinkönnig, get
a killer whale‘s mouth painted on the bow of
Commissioning of the U.S. Navy aircraft
carrier USS Franklin D. Roosevelt (CVB-42)
at the Brooklyn Navy Yard, New York City,
on Navy Day, 27 October 1945. Crew and
visitors crowd her flight deck, as the crews
of other ships present man their ship‘s rails
in her honour. The aircraft carrier on the
opposite side of pier is USS Franklin (CV-13),
under repair for battle damage received
earlier in the year.
Photo: U.S. Navy Naval History and Heritage
A United Service Organizations troupe posing with a Messerschmitt P.1101 at the
Oberbayerische Forschungsanstalt, Oberammergau, Germany, in 1945. It was also
with these fighters that Kleinkönnig and his fellow pilots clashed over Antarctica in
1946 and 1947.
Photo: Wikimedia Commons
the Tempest. You‘ve really done a good job
of that, considering the circumstances. We‘ll
be flying joint patrols with Meteors of „Smoky“ Shraeder for future events. We gotta
come up with something on those Germans.
We‘ll also be joined by the USS Franklin D.
Roosevelt. They‘ve got Bearcats and Phantom jets.
Cäsar III base, after the battle with the Tempests
Messerschmitt P.1101 stopped in a rock hangar. The turbine was slowly running down
and the mechanics began to swarm around
the blue and white machine. An officer climbed out of the cockpit and inspected the hits
in the wing from 20 mm Tempest shells.
The disheveled and smiling Haunebu pilot
approached from the next hall. He saluted
impeccably and clicked his heels together.
„Lieutenant Woidich, Colonel, welcome
to our base and congratulations on your
kill! I saw your Tommy land on the surface.
I suspected that Eismeer 1 was you.“
Theo Weissenberger shook his head. „Thank
you, but I also saw yours fall into the water.
I was already quite far away, but I definitely
saw a geyser of water when he hit the surface. Congratulations!“
„Your Tempest today was the first Geschwader ´Nowotny´ s victory in New Swabia?“
„No, we‘ve already taken out a couple of B-29s and seaplanes.“
„When are you switching to Haunebu? It‘s an
„Perhaps next month. Our friends in the
factories down there are doing great. Can
I see the flying wonder?“
„Of course, come on, I‘ll explain everything.
We‘ve designed some aerodynamic modifications for the new Haunebu III. This is the
anti-G suit and here is the spacesuit...“
Aircraft carrier HMS Habbakuk, north of the Antarctic coast, November
Between the carrier group and the coast
of Antarctica, which loomed on the horizon,
a curtain of flak bursts alternately thickened
and thinned. By the third day, attacks on German mountain airfields were under way, and
Allied pilots were in the air several times a day.
However, the Luftwaffe persistently attacked
the alliance and sank several ships. Now and
then a hit aircraft crashed into the sea, or
a geyser of water rose into the air from an aerial bomb or torpedo.
The deck of the giant aircraft carrier was filled.
This time, Tempests from several squadrons
were tasked with bombing additional landing platforms in the rocks. Meteors provided
fighter escort. There wasn‘t much chance of
rockets and bombs making their way inside
the hangars, but they managed to at least
cover the surrounding area with rocks and
damage the platforms. This also made life difficult for the Luftwaffe.
Kleinkönnig started as Rabbit 5 with
the young Norwegian wingman Torgeir.
The squadron gathered in formation in
a circle around the aircraft carrier and, under
Sheddan‘s guidance, climbed to five thousand meters. It then headed south. Fairbanks‘
meteors patrolled a thousand meters above
As the British formation passed the coast,
in the opposite direction, Helldivers, Bearcats
and Phantoms from the US Navy flew at lower flight levels. Some obviously damaged
and lagging behind the others. Then the radio went into a chaotic scream of American
swear words. It turned out that German jets
and a few Haunebus were heading towards
INFO Eduard - January 2022