List of all U-boats

U-615

Type

VIIC

 
Ordered15 Aug 1940
Laid down20 May 1941 Blohm & Voss, Hamburg (werk 591)
Launched8 Feb 1942
Commissioned26 Mar 1942Oblt. Ralph Kapitzky
Commanders
26 Mar 1942 - 7 Aug 1943  Kptlt. Ralph Kapitzky
Career
4 patrols
26 Mar 1942-31 Aug 1942  8. Flottille (training)
1 Sep 1942-7 Aug 1943  3. Flottille (active service)
Successes4 ships sunk, total tonnage 27,231 GRT
Fate

Sunk 7 Aug, 1943 in the Caribbean Sea south-east of Curaquo, in position 12.38N, 64.15W, by depth charges from US 6 Mariner and 1 Ventura aircraft. 4 dead and 43 survivors.

Loss position

See the 4 ships hit by U-615 - View the 4 war patrols

This was possibly the longest ongoing combat between a U-boat and aircraft. U-615's battle enabled many other U-boats in the Caribbean to surface and escape to the east.

The aircraft were from the following squadrons; VP-204 (P-6 and P-8), VP-205 (P-2, P-11 and P-4) and VB-130 (Ventura B-5).

Wolfpack operations

U-615 operated with the following Wolfpacks during its career:
   Pfeil (12 Sep 1942 - 22 Sep 1942)
   Blitz (22 Sep 1942 - 26 Sep 1942)
   Tiger (26 Sep 1942 - 30 Sep 1942)
   Wotan (5 Oct 1942 - 19 Oct 1942)
   Draufgänger (1 Dec 1942 - 11 Dec 1942)
   Ungestüm (11 Dec 1942 - 30 Dec 1942)
   Burggraf (25 Feb 1943 - 5 Mar 1943)
   Raubgraf (7 Mar 1943 - 20 Mar 1943)
   Seewolf (24 Mar 1943 - 30 Mar 1943)
   Adler (7 Apr 1943 - 13 Apr 1943)

Attacks on this boat and other events

15 Oct 1942
The attack by a British B-24 Liberator aircraft (RAF 120/H) on 15 Oct, 1942 in position 53.58N, 33.43W, formerly credited with sinking U-661, was in fact against U-615, causing no damage. (Sources: 1987-06-01, FDS/NHB)

14 Jun 1943
21.12 hrs, Bay of Biscay, outbound: while proceeding in company with U-257 and U-600, U-615 was strafed by a British Wellington (RAF Sqdn 547/H, pilot P/O J.W. Hermiston). One of the deck crew operating a gun was killed. [Bootsmaat Heinz Wilke] (Sources: Franks/Zimmerman/Rohwer)

29 Jul 1943
The beginning of one of the most dogged hunts of any U-boat during the war. First to attack the boat was an American B-18 bomber on this day. For the next week the boat fought its way across the Atlantic through multiple air attacks, shooting down one Mariner flying boat and damaging others. The boat was finally overwhelmed and sunk in the Caribbean eight days later. (Sources: Blair, vol 2, page 363)

6 Aug 1943
Aircraft attack, aircraft shot down:American Mariner (Sqdn VP-205/P-4)

U-615 was finally lost after a massive and prolonged air action against her in the Caribbean. The boat fought bravely for days against overwhelming odds before finally being sunk.

4 recorded attacks on this boat.

General notes on this boat

11 Apr 1943. On 11 April, 1943 U-615 was slightly damaged by debris when the Liberty ship Edward B. Dudley exploded after being hit by a coup de grâce from a distance of 800m. The commander was wounded and the U-boat was forced to return to base.

Men lost from the boat

14 Jun 1943
21.12 hrs, Bay of Biscay, outbound: while proceeding in company with U-257 and U-600, U-615 was strafed by a British Wellington (RAF Sqdn 547/H, pilot P/O J.W. Hermiston). One of the deck crew operating a gun was killed. [Bootsmaat Heinz Wilke]

  Related: For more info on such losses see - Men lost from U-boats -

U-boat Emblems

We have 2 emblem entries for this boat. See the emblem page for this boat or view emblems individually below.


Torpedo and Bird

Turtle

Media links


U-Boat Operations of the Second World War - Vol 2

Wynn, Kenneth


U-Boat Versus Aircraft

Franks, Norman and Zimmerman, Eric


German U-Boat Losses During World War II

Niestle, Axel


Hitler's U-boat War, Vol II

Blair, Clay


Hitler's U-boat War

Blair, Clay