Korvettenkapitän (Crew 27)
|Born||6 Feb 1909||Bruchsal, Baden|
|Died||25 Oct 1986||(77)|
|U-5||1 Oct 1936||2 Feb 1938||No war patrols|
|U-39||10 Dec 1938||14 Sep 1939||1 patrol (27 days)|
Gerhard Glattes joined the German Navy (Reichsmarine) in 1927. He went through U-boat training from March to Sept 1936. On 1 Oct 1936 he took command of the small "duck" school boat U-5, commanding her until 2 Feb 1938 (Busch and Röll, 1999).
Glattes then served in several staff positions until he began his U-boat familiarization (Baubelehrung) at the AG Weser yard in Hamburg on 18 Nov 1938. On 10 Dec he took command of his first attack boat, the much larger type IX boat U-39 (Busch and Röll, 1999).
First U-boat to be sunk in WWII
On 19 Aug 1939 Kptlt. Gerhard Glattes took his U-39 out from Wilhelmshaven in preparation for the possible war in near future. On 14 Sept 1939 while inbound for base after 26 days at sea the boat ran into the British Aircraft Carrier HMS Ark Royal - every submariner's dream target. Glattes carefully set up a very promising attack and fired 3 torpedoes on the carrier and then heard detonations. Assuming a hit they were thrilled but actually none of the torpedoes hit the carrier, all malfunctioned and exploded near the ship (Blair, 1996).
The 3 escort destroyers, HMS Faulknor, HMS Foxhound and HMS Firedrake, swung into action and through good sonar conditions managed to damage the U-39 enough for Glattes to order the boat to the surface and the crew to abandon ship. She surfaced in broad daylight surrounded by 3 British destroyers who opened fire but promptly stopped when it was evident that the Germans were abandoning ship. All 44 crew members were rescued (Blair, 1996).
Gerhard Glattes spent the next 7 and a half years as Prisoner of War (POW), being released on 8 April 1947 (Busch and Röll, 1999). This was the second longest captivity of any U-boat Commander, only Günther Lorentz was kept longer - by one day.
Patrol info for Gerhard Glattes
|1.||U-39||19 Aug 1939||Wilhelmshaven||14 Sep 1939||Sunk||Patrol 1,||27 days|
Ships hit by Gerhard Glattes
No entries found.