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Exploring a WW2 aircraft Wreck in Greece: Andreas Löschl checks a shot down Bf109 in Crete
Interviews, WW2 in Greece
By Pierre Kosmidis
UPDATE: Experts who have examined the wreckage, claim that this aircraft wreck is a Bf109 G-6, a model variant that entered production in the late Autumn of 1942, and was initially designed as a universal platform which could be quickly converted to various roles as needed in field conditions. Therefore it could not have participated in Operation Merkur, the Battle of Crete. The search continues!
Mr. Andreas Löschl from Vienna, Austria, scuba dived in one of the WW2 aircraft wrecks in Crete, a battle relic from 1941, when the Germans invaded the Greek island and shares his experience and photos with pierrekosmidis.blogspot.com and WW2 Wrecks in Greece.
In May 1941, the nazis launched an airborne invasion of Crete, under the code name “Unternehmen Merkur” (Operation Mercury).
The official historians recorded 147 Luftwaffe aircraft destroyed and 64 damaged by enemy action and 73 destroyed and 84 damaged by other causes during the Battle of Crete.
In 1987, Shores, Cull and Malizia recorded losses of 220 aircraft destroyed and 64 written off due to damage, a total of 284 aircraft, with several hundred damaged.
311 Luftwaffe aircrew were listed as killed or missing and 127 were wounded.
In a 1948 RAF staff publication, Luftwaffe losses were given as about 4.500 parachute and glider troop casualties and about 170 Ju52s lost or severely damaged; losses in fighter and bomber units were small due to the lack of air opposition.
Not far from the northern coast of Crete, close to Anissaras, at approximately 800 metres from the beach, in a sandy seafloor, 27 metres under the surface, a German Messerschmitt Bf109 fighter aircraft is lying upside down, frozen in time.
The Bf109 is broken into three parts and is in an upside down position on the seafloor.
“The aircraft’s propeller is some metres away from the body of the wreck. In addition to the wreck there are several fragments of the Bf109, a machine gun, oxygen cylinders and other parts”,Mr. Andreas Löschl says.
Mr. Andreas Löschl adds: “The tail is at a distance of about 100 metres from the wreck, on a sandy area, at a depth of 29 metres.”