Johannes Liebe

Kapitänleutnant (Crew 33)

8 ships sunk, total tonnage 46,729 GRT

Born  8 Jul 1913 Rosswein, Saxony
Died  18 Oct 1982(69)Frankfurt am Main, Germany


1 Apr 1933 Offiziersanwärter
1 Jul 1934 Fähnrich zur See
1 Apr 1936 Oberfähnrich zur See
1 Oct 1936 Leutnant zur See
1 Jun 1938 Oberleutnant zur See
1 Apr 1941 Kapitänleutnant


  Luftwaffe Observer Badge
  Iron Cross 2nd Class
  U-boat War Badge 1939
  Iron Cross 1st Class

U-boat Commands

U-6 11 Jul 1940 Mar, 1941   No war patrols 
U-332 7 Jun 1941 27 Jan 1943   5 patrols (277 days) 

Johannes Liebe joined the German Navy (Reichsmarine) in 1933. From Nov 1938 to Nov 1939 he served as a signals officer at Naval Airfield HQ, after which he started his U-boat training.

On completing his training he was given command of the small type IIA U-boat school boat U-6 on 11 July 1940. Oblt. Liebe commanded the boat until March 1941 when he was sent as a supernumerary Watch Officer on the famous U-48 (Schultze). He went on one 23 day patrol 17 March - 8 April 1941, on which four ships totalling almost 23,000 GRT were sunk.

In May 1941 the recently-promoted Kptlt. Liebe commenced U-boat construction familiarization (Baubelehrung) in preparation for taking command of the type VIIC U-boat U-332 on 7 June.

During his third patrol in U-332 in early 1942 Liebe went to Cape Hatteras, USA but was severely low on fuel and only had six days to operate there. He nevertheless managed to sink four ships totalling over 25,000 GRT before returning to France (Blair, 1996).

After having sunk the American merchantman Raphael Semmes on 28 June 1942, Liebe and his men aided ten of the survivors, dressing their wounds and giving them tobacco, water and food before leaving (Blair, 1996).

Liebe's five patrols in U-332 were successful: eight ships with a total of tonnage of over 46,000GRT sunk (277 days at sea).

After leaving the boat in January 1943 Liebe served in several staff positions, spending much of that time as an adviser on Torpedo evaluation. After the surrender he was briefly detained as a POW, being released on 29 July 1945.


Blair, C. (1996). Hitler’s U-boat War. The Hunters, 1939-1942.
Busch, R and Röll, H-J. (1998). German U-boat commanders of World War II.

Patrol info for Johannes Liebe

 U-boat Departure Arrival  
1. U-332 30 Oct 1941  Kiel  16 Dec 1941  La Pallice  Patrol 1,48 days
2. U-332 27 Jan 1942  La Pallice  8 Feb 1942  La Pallice  Patrol 2,13 days
3. U-332 17 Feb 1942  La Pallice  10 Apr 1942  La Pallice  Patrol 3,53 days
4. U-332 24 May 1942  La Pallice  1 Aug 1942  La Pallice  Patrol 4,70 days
5. U-332 5 Sep 1942  La Pallice  6 Dec 1942  La Pallice  Patrol 5,93 days
5 patrols, 277 days at sea

Ships hit by Johannes Liebe

Date U-boat Name of ship Tons Nat. Convoy
13 Mar 1942U-332 Albert F. Paul735am
13 Mar 1942U-332 Trepca5,042yu
16 Mar 1942U-332 Australia11,628am
19 Mar 1942U-332 Liberator7,720am
28 Jun 1942U-332 Raphael Semmes6,027am
19 Jul 1942U-332 Leonidas M.4,573gr
29 Sep 1942U-332 Registan6,008br
19 Oct 1942U-332 Rothley4,996br

8 ships sunk (46,729 tons).

We have a picture of this vessel.

About ranks and decorations
Ranks shown in italics are our database inserts based on the rank dates of his crew comrades. The officers of each crew would normally have progressed through the lower ranks at the same rate.

Media links

German U-boat Commanders of World War II

Busch, Rainer and Röll, Hans-Joachim

Listing of all U-boat commanders

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