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Photo from Gerstmann
4 May 1921 in Dresden.
01.10.1942 : Gefreiter
01.02.1943 : Obergfreiter
15.08.1943 : K.O.A. ( = KriegsOffizierAnwarter )
01.10.1943 : Unteroffizier ( gemass L.V.Bl. 45/43 Ziffer 1891 : umbennenung in Fahnenjuncker Unteroffizier )
01.04.1944 : Fahnrich
01.11.1944 : Oberfahnrich
00.00.00 Segelflugzeugführerabzeichen (Glider Pilot's Badge)
00.00.00 Frontflug-Spange für Auklärer in Bronze (Operational flying clasp in Bronze for reconnaisance)
Like many young men in the 1930's Gerstmann was one of the numerous prewar Hitler Youth enthusiasts and joined the Flieger Hitler Jugend , while with this organisation he earned himself the A, B & C glider profiency badges .
6 June 40
Gertmann enters service in the RAD until he was drafted into the Luftwaffe .
23 September 41
Gerstmann is drafted into the Luftwaffe and more specifically into the "Segelfliegerschule der LW , Neuhausen - Konigsberg".
30 September 41
Flieger Gerstmann earned his Glider pilots badge (number : 88198 /41) and is allowed to fly glider planes klasse A & B .
(this means : klasse A : DFS 230 , KLasse B : Go 242 and larger).
His last flight towards Afrika was on 01.11.1942 ( Lecce => Tobruk ) and the day afterwards ( 02.11.1942 ) he flew back ( Tobruk => Iraklion ) , after this flight he never did see afrika again during the war .
flight : 224 : Transport from Venedig ( Venice / Italy ) towards Foggia ( also Italy ) with A Ju 52 .
flight : 225 : flight from Lecce ( Italy ) towards Bengasi ( Afrika ) on 25.06.1942 with a Go 242 ( glider plane ) , towed by a He 111
flight : 226 : flight from Bengasi ( Afrika ) towards Lecce ( Italy )on 25.06.1942 , same Go 242 and towing plane
note : both flights are 920 km = about 4 hours flying and one the same day
flight :227 : flight from Lecce ( Italy ) towards Ael Gazala ( Afrika ( in the area from Tobruk ) on 05.07.1942 with Go 242 , km : 1070 and more then 5 hours flight !!!
flight : 228 : flight from Ael Gazala ( Afrika ) towards Bengasi ( Afrika ) on 08.07.1942 with Go 242
flight :229 : flight from Bengasi ( Afrika ) towards Lecce ( Italy ) on 08.07.1942 with his Go 242 , towed by a He 111
flight :230 : flight from Lecce ( Italy ) towards Iraklion ( Greece / Crete ) on 13.07.1942 with Go 242
flight :231 : flight from Iraklion towards Iraklion on 14.07.1942 with Go 242 , towing plane He 111
note : the remark written in pencil : Ruckkehr wegens Motorschaden He 111 => this is the explantion why the flight was not carried out untill the end
flight :232 : flight from Iraklion ( Greece / Crete ) towards Lecce ( Italy ) on 16.07.1942 with Go 242
flight :233 : flight from Lecce ( Italy ) towards Kalamaci ( Greece ) on 03.08.1942 with Go 242
flight : 234 : flight from Kalamaci ( Greece ) towards Derna ( Afrika ) on 04.08.1942 with Go 242
flight :235 : flight from Derna ( Afrika ) towards Kalamaci ( GReece ) on 04.08.1942 with Go 242
flight : 236 : flight from Kalamaci ( GReece ) towards Lecce ( Italy ) on 05.08.1942 with Go 242
flight : 237 : flight from Lecce ( Italy ) towards Kalamaci ( GReece ) on 15.08.1942 with Go 242
flight : 238 : flight from Kalamaci ( GReece ) towards Tobruk ( Afrika ) on 16.08.1942 with Go 242
flight : 239 : flight from Tobruk ( Afrika ) towards Iraklion ( Greece / Crete ) on 16.08.1942 with Go 242
flight : 240 : flight from Iraklion ( Greece / Crete ) towards Kalamaci ( Greece ) on 17.08.1942 with Go 242
flight : 241 : flight from Kalamaci ( Greece ) towards Lecce ( Italy ) on 18.08.1942 with Go 242
flight : 242 : flight from Lecce ( Italy ) towards Iraklion ( Greece / Crete ) on 18.08.1942
Here is the entry from the " Frontflugspange fur TRansporter im Bronze " , awarded on 01.09.1942 => at tha time he had already 32 days counting for the clasp ( for a bronze grade you needed => 20 , see also appropriate section on the main site )
is last flight towards Afrika was on 01.11.1942 ( Lecce => Tobruk ) and the day afterwards ( 02.11.1942 ) he flew back ( Tobruk => Iraklion ) , after this flight he never did see afrika again during the war .
He did gett Hepatitis and went towards several weeks in Hospital. , after recovery he was involved in further advanced training, etc .. he was one of the few Glide rpilots who managed to stay with a Glide runit untell the very last end of the war , he was releaved from the Luftwaffe on 05.05.1945 and became a US POW .
he was a free man shortly afterwards again => discharge on 08.06.1945 ( so he spent a little more then 1 month as a POW , this should be seing as the exeption !!!!!!! ) and was able to return towards his hometown Dresden .
8 November 93
After the war Gerstmann has a successful career businessman and dies from a severe heart attack .
Oberfähnrich Karl-Heinz Gerstmann document group