WNr. 110087, Hptm. Horst Carganico, CO of I./JG 5, Herzogenaurach, Germany, May 1944
The first unit in which the then twenty-two-year-old Lt. Carganico served after completing flight training was JG 1 at the beginning of the war. This was followed by service with JG 77 with which he saw combat in Norway and then the Battle of Britain. On January 1, 1941, he returned to Norway where he commanded 1./JG 77. On September 25, 1941, Carganico achieved his 27th kill and was awarded the Knight’s Cross. In March 1942, Carganico’s unit was redesignated 6./JG 5 and he was given command of the entire II. Gruppe in April 1942. On March 26, 1944, he took over I./JG 5 as CO and the unit saw combat against Allied forces within the Defense of the Reich. On April 27 of the same year, Carganico took off for the last time. In an attack on a group of B-17s, his Bf 109G-5 was heavily damaged and during his attempt to belly-land, he struck some high power lines and died in the resulting crash near the French town of Chevry. His final tally consisted of sixty kills over the course of 600 sorties. Bf 109G-6/AS aircraft were assigned to the high altitude interception units, therefore they were camouflaged in the overall coat of RLM 76. Hptm. Carganico had Mickey Mouse painted on the fuselage port side, marking carried by his previous airplanes. Starboard side is not photographically documented, it may have carried the Gruppe Commander’s double chevron marking.
WNr. 412807, Uffz. Heinz Zimmermann, 6./JG 27, Fels am Wagram, Austria, July 1944
In the beginning of April 1944, first Bf 109G-6/AS aircraft were delivered to JG 1, JG 5 and JG 11 units, the following month several aircraft were delivered to JG 3 and also to JG 27, at that time based at the Fels am Wagram airport in Austria. Yellow 2 was camouflaged in RLM 74/75/76 colors sporting the Reich Defense marking of the aircraft serving with JG 27, i.e., green band around the rear fuselage. Irregular stripes of RLM 74 were applied on the engine cowling sides at the unit. There is a FuG 16 system antenna mounted at the bottom of the fuselage.
Stab I./JG 3, Gütersloh, Germany, July 1944
The patches of RLM 74/75 were applied to the originally overall gray (RLM 76) aircraft at the unit level while the fuselage sides, tail surfaces and engine cowling sides were sprayed with the irregular stripes of RLM 74. The white stripe surrounding the rear fuselage was an insignia of the JG 3 aircraft flying Reich Defense missions. JG 3 insignia was sprayed on both sides of the engine cowling.
Hptm. Friedrich-Karl Müller, CO of 1./NJGr. 10, Werneuchen, Germany, July 1944
Friedrich-Karl Müller, the future Knight’s Cross recipient and the ace with thirty night victories over the enemy aircraft, was born on December 4, 1912, in Sulzbach in Saarland. In 1934 he completed his pilot training and got the job with Lufthansa. After the outbreak of World War II, he was transferred to the Luftwaffe. Initially, he was flying as a transport pilot, later as an instrument flying instructor. In December 1942, he was assigned to KG 50 flying with He 177s and in the summer of the following year he responded to Hajo Hermann call and requested the reassignment to JG 300 famous for its Wilde Sau (single-engine fighter night interception without airborne radar guidance) tactics. While serving with this unit, Müller was credited with 19 victories and in January 1944 he was ordered to form 1./NJGr. 10. In August 1944, he was promoted to command I./NJG 11 and was leading this unit until the end of World War II. He passed away on November 2, 1987. The lower and part of side surfaces were painted black to better suit night conditions. The red band around the rear fuselage indicated the original owner of this aircraft within Reich Defense system was JG 300. The pilot’s score was painted on both sides of the rudder in the form of the twenty-three stripes with the enemy nationality and date of the victory.
Oblt. Manfred Dieterle, 2./EJG 2, Hagenow, Germany, December 1944
Ergänzungsnachtjagdstaffel was established on March 9, 1944, in Ludwigslust and its task was the operational training of the single-engine night fighter pilots who were afterwards destined for JG 300, JG 301, JG 302 and later for NJG 10 and NJG 11. In the end of July, the Staffel was extended to the Gruppe size (EJGr. 2) and in the beginning of November the name was changed to EJG 2. In the meantime, the relocation to the Hagenow airport took place. In October the unit received Messerschmitts Bf 109G-6/AS and G-14/AS with which the instructors were to fly the night sorties against British Mosquitoes. Contrary to the training aircraft which carried the markings of the particular Staffel (1. Staffel white, 2. Staffel red, 3. Staffel yellow, 4. Staffel blue) these combat ones were marked with the numerals in green color. The original camouflage of Green 5 was oversprayed with black color for better night camouflaging and it also carried EJG 2 insignia on the port side of the fuselage nose.