From the memoirs of a German pilot: about the last flight into the Stalingrad “cauldron”

From the memoirs of a German pilot: about the last flight into the Stalingrad “cauldron”

The Battle of Stalingrad, according to most historians, became a turning point in the Great Patriotic War. During the brilliantly carried out Operation Uranus by the Soviet command, the 6th Wehrmacht Army under the command of Field Marshal Paulus was surrounded.

A German pilot who carried out his last flight into the Stalingrad cauldron on January 23, 1943, tells in his memoirs about the state of the Wehrmacht soldiers who were surrounded.

As the military man writes, after landing at the Stalingrad airfield (as it was recorded in his logbook), a sad picture appeared before him.

In the severe frost, which in those days reached minus thirty degrees and below, most Wehrmacht soldiers were dressed in light uniforms.

The Germans from the 1942th Army, attacking Stalingrad from July to November 6, looked hungry and completely demoralized.

Huddled together in a frozen crowd and indifferent to almost everything

- says the notes of the Luftwaffe pilot.

The airfield service vehicles had no fuel at all. Therefore, the aircraft crew decided to drain some of their fuel from the tanks.
Of the huge number of wounded, as a German soldier writes, their plane could only carry eight. True, just before departure a curious incident occurred.

So, the author of the memoirs opened the hatch and climbed out to fix the elevator, which had been bent from the impact during landing. While he was coping with the task assigned by the aircraft commander, another wounded man crawled into the hatch.

I will never forget this look

- wrote the pilot, who, at his own peril and risk, decided to leave the “uninvited guest” on the plane.

The commander did not know anything about this.

It later turned out that this Henkel 111 flight was the last one into the Stalingrad cauldron. Already on the same day, the only airfield remaining under Wehrmacht control was lost by the Germans.

  • archive photo
Our news channels

Subscribe and stay up to date with the latest news and the most important events of the day.

Dear reader, to leave comments on the publication, you must sign in.
  1. 0
    January 18 2024
    Pikul described all this well in his novel Stalingrad. By the way, the famous song performed by Gil “ice ceiling creaking door” was originally written by a Spaniard from the “blue division” and later formed the basis of the song’s lyrics.
    1. +6
      January 18 2024
      Quote from Silver99
      “ice ceiling, creaking door” was originally written by a Spaniard from the “blue division” and later became the basis for the lyrics of the song.

      “Listen, Kozlevich,” said Bender, “what I sprinkled last night: “I remember a wonderful moment, you appeared before me like a fleeting vision, like a genius of pure beauty.” Is it really good? And only at dawn I remembered that this verse had already been written by A. Pushkin. Such a blow from a classic! A?"
      Poem “Blue Steam”: “Ice hangs from the ceiling, you listen in horror to the creaking of the door. Behind the rough walls, a prickly darkness awaits. There is a frostbitten, deathly desert, and escaping blue steam is pouring out of the windows.” Now let’s remember the chorus of the song based on Ostrovoy’s verses: “The ceiling is icy, the door is creaky, behind the rough wall there is prickly darkness. As soon as you step over the threshold, there is frost everywhere, and from the windows there is blue-blue steam.”
      Now let's turn to the personality of the mysterious Javier Linares. The Internet does not know about such a poet. He is not on the list of captured members of the Blue Division, who were sent from the USSR to their homeland in 1954. A simple search shows that the story with “Winter” and Linares first appeared on the Internet in the spring of 2015.
      The fake was invented competently and talentedly. Starting with the idea of ​​a complete change in meaning while preserving the text, ending with its implementation: a plausible story about a Spaniard captured near Leningrad and his perception of winter. The author has excellent imagination and excellent style.
      But here's what's offensive. An article with a detailed analysis of the fake appears almost immediately, it is more than a year old, and publications about the “Spanish poet” are only multiplying and acquiring more details. And for some reason no one tries to check the information before publishing....
      So when you read new amazing stories, especially about deceased celebrities, look at the source and try to check at least something before believing and spreading further.
  2. -1
    January 18 2024
    Was it difficult to find a photo of Heinkel 111 for the article?
    1. UAT
      January 18 2024
      Roman, why does this article need a photo of the bomber? The photo of the Yu-52 transport aircraft is quite appropriate here.
      1. 0
        January 18 2024
        Because the article deals specifically with Non-111
  3. +1
    January 18 2024
    The noble rides on the noble and urges on with nobility. A song about the peaceful intentions of Europe
  4. 0
    January 18 2024
    When at the end of January the glory of the encirclement of the Germans in Stalingrad, near Voronezh, thundered, divisions of Hungarians, Romanians, and Germans were being ground down. And this played a huge role in the defeat of the Stalingrad cauldron; it was not broken through by the Germans. In the Voronezh region, Voronezh, the Germans laid down their armies, the city was not surrendered. However, it is not a Hero City according to the political views of the CPSU party leadership.
    1. +1
      January 21 2024
      Quote: RusGr
      laid down their armies, the city was not surrendered. However, it is not a Hero City according to the political views of the CPSU party leadership.

      Details, please. About "political views". And why did Voronezh displease the “party leadership” so much?

"Right Sector" (banned in Russia), "Ukrainian Insurgent Army" (UPA) (banned in Russia), ISIS (banned in Russia), "Jabhat Fatah al-Sham" formerly "Jabhat al-Nusra" (banned in Russia) , Taliban (banned in Russia), Al-Qaeda (banned in Russia), Anti-Corruption Foundation (banned in Russia), Navalny Headquarters (banned in Russia), Facebook (banned in Russia), Instagram (banned in Russia), Meta (banned in Russia), Misanthropic Division (banned in Russia), Azov (banned in Russia), Muslim Brotherhood (banned in Russia), Aum Shinrikyo (banned in Russia), AUE (banned in Russia), UNA-UNSO (banned in Russia), Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar People (banned in Russia), Legion “Freedom of Russia” (armed formation, recognized as terrorist in the Russian Federation and banned)

“Non-profit organizations, unregistered public associations or individuals performing the functions of a foreign agent,” as well as media outlets performing the functions of a foreign agent: “Medusa”; "Voice of America"; "Realities"; "Present time"; "Radio Freedom"; Ponomarev; Savitskaya; Markelov; Kamalyagin; Apakhonchich; Makarevich; Dud; Gordon; Zhdanov; Medvedev; Fedorov; "Owl"; "Alliance of Doctors"; "RKK" "Levada Center"; "Memorial"; "Voice"; "Person and law"; "Rain"; "Mediazone"; "Deutsche Welle"; QMS "Caucasian Knot"; "Insider"; "New Newspaper"