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  1. I've had this group sometime and was very pleased to get it as I corresponded many years ago with the U-Boat commander. A nice group to Mechaniker Obermaat (Torpedo) Willi Lüders who served aboard U-121 (training boat) and U-968 (front boat) under Oberleutnant zur See Otto Westphalen RKT. Inside covers shows a replaced photo which was common for Kriegsmarine, generally showing awards or promotion. Of course unlike Heer, Luftwaffe, and SS Soldbücher the Kriegsmarine Soldbuch was issued with a photo. Page 1 bears a large red "U" denoting U-Boat personnel. Page 3 bears the FP Nr. 51536 which corresponds with U-Boot 968 against his promotion and the authorsing signature of Oberleutnant zur See und Kommandant Otto Westphalen RKT. Page 4 again has Westphalen's signature again his awards. U-Boat Badge and EK II awarded 11.9.1944, 1 day after putting into port after U-968s second patrol. This should have been the third patrol, however she left Narvik on 17.7.1944 and was sighted on the 18th by a B-24 Liberator of 85 Sqn. (Fl/Lt W F J Harwood). Two depth charge attacks were made in the face of heavy flak and the aircraft was shot down. Six of her crew were picked up my Catalina three days later. On the morning of the 19th however, she was damaged in three attacks by another Liberator. One crewman was killed and 6 wounded. The boat had to put in for repairs on 21.7.1944 at Bogenbucht. U-Boat Bar in Bronze was awarded 22.2.1945, 2 days after putting into Kilbotn after her fifth patrol. This was a successful patrol: 14.2.45: Torpedoed and damaged SS Norfjell (8129t) of Soviet convoy BK3 off Kola Inlet. 14.2.45: Torpedoed and damaged US Liberty ship Horace Grey (7200t) of Soviet convoy BK3 off Kola Inlet. 17.2.45: Torpedoed and damaged HMS Lark (U 11) (1350t) of convoy RA64 northeast of Murmansk. 17.2.45: Torpedoed and damaged SS Thomas Scott (7176t) of convoy RA64 13 miles southwest of Kilden Island. Iron Cross 1st Class was awarded 1.4.1945, 1 day after putting into Kilbotn after her sixth patrol: 20.3.45: Torpedoed and sunk HMS Lapwing (U 62) (1350t) of convoy JW65 north of Murmansk. 20.3.45: Torpedoed and sunk Liberty ship Thomas Donaldson of convoy JW65 20 miles from the mouth of Kola Inlet. This was also the day that Oberleutnant zur See und Kommandant Otto Westphalen received his Ritterkreuz on deck. Page 12 and 13 records issued of clothing of interest are some signatures. Just over half way down page 13 is that of Bootsmaat Nr. 1 Werner Hahne, he was the person killed on 19.7.1944. Underneath that of Leutnant zur See Hans Schatteburg, I Wach Offizier. Page 14 again has Hans Schatteburg, Otto Westphalen also Leutnant zur See und Kommandant i.V. Richard Hähnelt and Sanitätsmaat Heinrich van Rassum. Page 23-24 records his units but not much to get from that as was posted to 21 U-Flottillen (FP Nr. 11878) on 11.3.1942, of course U-121 was under this Flotilla. From there to 8 Kriegsschiffbaulehrabteilung for commissioning of U-968. On completion transferred to 5 U-Flottille on 17.3.1943 for training and sea trials prior to becoming a front boat with 13 U-Flottille on 1.3.1944. Page 36-37 of course recorded leaves over 5 days. Leave 3 has the signature of Otto Westphalen as a Leutnant zur See und Kommandant U-121, underneath that of the later Kommandant Leutnant zur See Ewald Hülsenbeck. Two more signature of Otto Westphalen as Kommandant U-968 and leave 8 that of Oberleutnant zur See und Kommandant i.V. Claus-Dieter Oelschlägel.
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