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Photo from Menge's Wehrpas showing
him as a Leutnant Oct. 39.
31 July 1915 in Paderborn.
06.04.36-01.08.36 5./I.R. 18 Detmold
01.08.36-03.01.37 6./I.R. 18 Detmold
04.01.37-30.09.37 Kriegsschule München
01.10.37-30.06.38 Fliegerschule Hildesheim, Schülerkomp.
01.07.38-19.05.40 Aufklärungstaffel 4 (H) 14
Pages 12 and 13 from Menge's Wehrpas.
28.10.33 Reichssportabzeichen in Bronze (Reich Sports Badge in Bronze)
23.09.38 Beobachterabzeichen (Observer's Badge)
00.00.39 Medaille Zur Erinnerung An Den 1. Oktober 1938 mit Spange (Commemerative Medal of 1.10.38 with Prague Castle Bar)
00.00.39 Eiserne Kreuz 2. Klasse (Iron Cross 2nd Class)
Pages 22 and 23 from Menge's Wehrpas.
7 April 36
Menge enters the German Armed forces and receives his recruit training with the 5./ Infantrie Regiment 18 Detmold.
1 October 36
Menge is promoted to the rank of Fahnenjunker-Gefreiter.
1 September 37
Menge receives a promotion to the rank of Oberfähnrich.
Photo from Menge's Wehrpas
showing him as an Oberfähnrich.
1 January 38
Menge receives his officers commission and is promoted to the rank of Leutnant..
23 September 38
Menge completes his flight training for Observer and is awarded the Beobachterabzeichen (Observer's Badge).At the time of his award Leutnant Menge is attached to 4./Aufkl.Gruppe 18 then based in Köttingbrunn.
Menge's Beobachterschein 23 September 1938.
26 September 38
The newly awarded Beobachter Leutnant Menge receives his entry pass to the Haus der Flieger.
Menge's entry pass to Haus der Flieger.
1 November 38
Aufklärungstaffel 4 (F) 14 is formed in Köttingbrunn from 4./Aufkl.Gruppe 18.
1 September 1939
German invasion of Poland. Aufklärungstaffel 4 (F) 14 is at the time based in Mankendorf flying Dornier 17's and attached to Luftflotte 4 supporting operations for Heeresgruppe Süd, acting in south of Poland.
Most likely awarded at the beginning or shortly after the start of the Polish Campaign, Menge receives the Medaille Zur Erinnerung An Den 1. Oktober 1938 mit Spange (Commemerative Medal of 1.10.38 with Prague Castle Bar) for his service during the Sudeten occupation.
11-15 September 1939
Somewhere during this timeframe Aufklärungstaffel 4 (F) 14 was operating in the south of Poland directing attacks on the railway station at Lwow (Lemberg). Despite limited fighters opposition from the Polish Air Force Mendes aircraft was badly damaged by Polish Flak and had to belly-land at their airfield upon return from their sortie, no known wounded.
Leutnant Menge is awarded the Eiserne Kreuz 2. Klasse (Iron Cross 2nd Class) for his service during the Polish campaign.
Menge's Fühererschein issued 28 October 39.
15 April 1940
Menge's writes his last will.....
My last will
Franz Josef Menge
Franz Josef Menge
My last will and testament.
If anything should happen to me may this take place in front of the enemy!
No one should grieve for me. I am imploring my dear beloved mother to
accept the fact that the best thing for her is to be allowed to sacrifice her son
for a great and powerful Germany.
My mother will understand this!
I always have a clear conscience. Therefore I am also in the hands of my Lord God.
I place my belongings in the hands of my mother to do with them as she pleases.
I give my regards to my parents, to the members of my family, to all aquaintances,
and all my companions.
Until we again meet in the mercenary corner in the sky.
With the Füherer for a Great Germany!
Franz Jos. Menge
On the Western Front 15 April 1940
Will is signed by: Kursatz 10.02.40 Hauptmann and Staffelkapitan.
10 May 1940
Invasion of Holland, Belgium and France, Aufklärungstaffel 4 (F) 14 then based in Düsseldorf serves in the capacity of long range reconnaissance in co-operation with the Army.
19 May 1940
Leutnant Menge and his crew take off at 17.02 flying a Do 17 of 4.(F)/14 to try and locate Allied armored forces that may oppose the advancing Panzers south of Valenciennes. Their mission is successful and as the crew report back the position of the sighting they are attacked by French fighters 9 (nine) Morane 406 of GC III/3 patrolling the Cambrai-Le Quesnoy-Le Cateau area).
The Dornier is attacked by all fighters in a row and tries to escape into the clouds before diving down and flying on the "deck" . The Dorniers rear gunner returns fire as much as he could however the superiority of the force opposng them proves to much. Caporal-chef Josef Stehlik, a Czech pilot flying with the Armée de l'Air, finally shoots down the Dornier and it crashes near Locquignol, in the Mormal Forest, at 18.31 local hour (19.31 German time).
The three crew Leutnant Georg Losse (pilot), Leutnant Franz-Josef Menge (observer) and Feldwebel Heinrich Ambrosch (radioman) were killed. Two were found dead in the wreckage, the third was reported to have been killed by a French soldier retreating among the refugees.1
Do.17, ??+?? (Werknummer ????)
Leutnant Georg Losse FF
Leutnant Franz-Josef Menge BO
Feldwebel Heinrich Ambrosch BF
29 July 42
Wehrbezirkskommando Baden returns Menge's Wehrpas to his mother , Franziska Menge.
1. Source: "Les victoires de l'Aviation de chasse française, vol 2", by Arnaud Gillet
Leutnant Franz Josef Menge document group