List of all U-boats

U-77

Type

VIIC

 
Ordered25 Jan 1939
Laid down28 Mar 1940 Bremer Vulkan-Vegesacker Werft, Bremen-Vegesack (werk 5)
Launched23 Nov 1940
Commissioned18 Jan 1941Oblt. Heinrich Schonder (Knights Cross)
Commanders
18 Jan 1941 - 2 Sep 1942  Kptlt. Heinrich Schonder (Knights Cross)
2 Sep 1942 - 28 Mar 1943  Oblt. Otto Hartmann
Career
11 patrols
18 Jan 1941-30 Apr 1941  7. Flottille (training)
1 May 1941-31 Dec 1941  7. Flottille (active service)
1 Jan 1942-30 Apr 1942  23. Flottille (active service)
1 May 1942-28 Mar 1943  29. Flottille (active service)
Successes14 ships sunk, total tonnage 31,186 GRT
1 warship sunk, total tonnage 1,050 tons
2 ships damaged, total tonnage 5,384 GRT
2 warships damaged, total tonnage 2,880 tons
1 ship a total loss, total tonnage 5,222 GRT
Fate

Sank at 0115 hrs on 29 March 1943 south of Cape Nao, Spain, after being badly damaged in position 37.42N, 00.10E by depth charges from 2 British Hudson aircraft (48 & 233 Sqn.) on 28 March. 38 dead and 9 survivors.

Loss position

See the 20 ships hit by U-77 - View the 11 war patrols

Wolfpack operations

U-77 operated with the following Wolfpacks during its career:
   West (6 Jun 1941 - 20 Jun 1941)
   Grönland (10 Aug 1941 - 23 Aug 1941)
   Kurfürst (23 Aug 1941 - 2 Sep 1941)
   Seewolf (2 Sep 1941 - 7 Sep 1941)
   Reissewolf (21 Oct 1941 - 31 Oct 1941)
   Störtebecker (15 Nov 1941 - 2 Dec 1941)

Attacks on this boat and other events

1 Apr 1942
U-77 was attacked by a Swordfish aircraft in the Mediterranean, leaving the boat badly damaged and unable to dive.

4 Jul 1942
HMS Thrasher (Lt. H.S. Mackenzie, DSO, RN) fired three torpedoes at U-77 in position 32º48N, 33º36E, which all missed. Thrasher then surfaced to engage with gunfire, but U-77 dived and escaped.

13 Nov 1942
The target of the depth charge attack on 13 Nov 1942 by British corvettes HMS Lotus and HMS Poppy, credited with sinking U-605 was in fact U-77, which escaped with only minor damage. (Sources: 1987-07-01, FDS/NHB)

28 Mar 1943
The sinking of U-77 The boat was sighted at 11.25 hrs by a Hudson Mk.VI (48 Sqn RAF/L, pilot F/O J.B. Harrop) on patrol east of Cartagena in position 37°42N/00°10E, and dived immediately on being attacked. The aircraft dropped depth charges just ahead of the diving point. Oil and air bubbles were observed on the surface as water entered through a serious leak in the engine room, which forced U-77 to surface later, unable to dive. Hartmann reported his situation to the FdU while en route to Toulon, and was instructed to enter the neutral port of Alicante to make repairs under international maritime law. U-380 (Röther) was ordered to meet the boat to take off most of the crew to avoid internment in Spain, but before that could happen, Hudson Mk. IIIA T9430 (RAF Sqdn. 233/L, pilot F/O E.F. Castell) found U-77 at 17.45 hrs between Cabo San Antonio and Ibiza. Despite fierce flak, the aircraft made several attack runs, firing 3000 rounds of .303 ammunition and dropping four depth charges and a single A/S bomb, which detonated only 15 yards abaft the stern, for which F/O Castell was awarded the DFC.

The badly damaged boat managed to escape with the coming of dusk and continued to Alicante, but during the night both electric motors broke down, and as she lost way U-77 began to go down, sinking at 01.15 hrs on 29 March south of Cape Nao, Spain (the wreck has been located at a depth of 80m in position 38°33.334N/00°14.875E). The crew abandoned ship in one rubber dinghy and makeshift rafts made from deck planks, but the commander and 37 others died from exposure or drowning. Several hours later nine survivors were rescued by a Spanish fishing boat from Denia. They landed at Altea on 30 March, and were eventually repatriated. 36 bodies washed ashore in Spain, the commander and four men being buried at Altea, and 31 others at Calpe. In 1983 they were reinterred at the cemetery at Cuacos de Yuste, Provincia de Cáceres, Spain.

4 recorded attacks on this boat.

Men lost from U-boats

Unlike many other U-boats, which during their service lost men due to accidents and various other causes, U-77 did not suffer any casualties (we know of) until the time of her loss.

U-boat Emblems

We have 1 emblem entry for this boat. See the emblem page for this boat or view emblems individually below.


The Wild Onager - U-338

Media links


U-Boat Attack Logs

Daniel Morgan and Bruce Taylor


U-Boat Operations of the Second World War - Vol 1

Wynn, Kenneth


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

There was another U-77 in World War One
That boat was launched from its shipyard on 9 Jan 1916 and commissioned into the Imperial Navy on 10 Mar 1916. The Naval war in WWI was brought to an end with the Armistice signed on 11 Nov, 1918. Read about SM U 77 during WWI.