Hans "Specker" Grünberg
Oberleutnant

Hans Grünberg

    Hans “Specker” Grünberg was born on 8 July 1917 at Gross-Fahlenwerder in the Soldin area of Neumark/Pommern. Grünberg was serving with JG 3, based on the Eastern front, in August 1942. Unteroffizier Grünberg was assigned to 5./JG 3. He gained his first victory on 19 August 1942, when he shot down a Russian DB-3 twin-engine bomber. By the end of 1942, Grünberg had amassed 11 victories. He achieved his 20th victory on 23 April 1943, when he shot down a  Russian I-16 fighter, and his 30th on 31 May, when he shot down a Russian Yak-4 twin-engine fighter. Grünberg’s most successful day on the Eastern front came on 5 July, when he downed seven Russian Il-2 Sturmovik ground-attack aircraft in three missions to record his 37th through 43rd victories. His 50th victory was recorded on 12 July 1943 and his 61st and last victory on the Eastern Front was achieved on 1 August 1943. He had baled out four times during his time in Russia, including when he suffered engine failure following aerial combat with Russian Yak-1 fighters on 16 July. Grünberg then flew with 5./JG 3 on Reichsverteidigung duties based in Germany. He was awarded the Deutsches Kreuz in Gold on 27 September 1943. FahnenjunkerOberfeldwebel Grünberg recorded his first four-engine bomber shot down on 24 February 1944, when he claimed a USAAF B-24 near Bad Hersfeld for his 64th victory. On 9 May 1944, Grünberg was appointed Staffelkapitän of 5./JG 3, when Oberleutnant Leopold “Poldi” Münster (95 victories, RK-EL) was shot down and killed in action the day before. He claimed his 70th victory on 29 May, when he shot down a USAAF B-17 four-engine bomber near Stettin. Leutnant Grünberg was awarded the Ritterkreuz on 9 June 1944 for 77 victories.

Hans Grünberg`s Bf 109 G-5
Oberfeldwebel Hans Grünberg in the cockpit of his Bf 109 G-5.

    At the end of 1944, Grünberg was transferred to I./JG 7 flying Me 262 jet fighters. On 21 November, he was appointed Staffelkapitän of 1./JG 7, based at Lechfeld. On 17 April 1945, while returning from a combat mission against USAAF bombers, he was surprised by USAAF P-51 fighters and shot down over Plzen-Bory. The American fighters downed a total of four Me 262A-1a of I/JG 7, but only Grünberg survived having taken to his parachute. His last victory was claimed on 19 April, when he shot down a USAAF B-17 over Bohemia, but he again had to bale out of his Me 262 near Prague. On 17 April 1945, Grünberg was ordered to report to Reim for duty with Jagdverband 44 commanded by Generalleutnant Adolf Galland (104 victories, RK-Br). He served out the remainder of the war with this unit.
    “Specker” Grünberg was credited with 82 victories in 550 missions. He recorded 61 victories over the Eastern Front, including 27 Il-2 Sturmoviks. Of his 21 victories recorded over the Western Front, at least 11 were four-engine bombers. He recorded five victories with the Me-262 jet fighter, all four-engine bombers.
 
No
Date
Time
A/c Type
Unit
Location / Comments
1
19.8.1942
12:35
DB-3 5./JG 3 40 783
2
15.10.1942
9:27
LaGG-3 5./JG 3 38 363
3
17.10.1942
15:50
Pe-2 5./JG 3 38 381
4
29.10.1942
9:37
LaGG-3 5./JG 3 29 784
5
30.10.1942
8:55
LaGG-3 5./JG 3 28 141
6
30.11.1942
14:00
Il-2 5./JG 3 26 232
7
17.12.1942
12:22
Yak-1 5./JG 3 29 152
8
17.12.1942
12:25
Yak-1 5./JG 3 29 173
9
20.12.1942
12:36
Il-2 5./JG 3 -
10
22.12.1942
12:05
Yak-1 5./JG 3 39 282
11
27.12.1942
13:32
Il-2 5./JG 3 49 191
12
11.4.1943
5:18
I-16 5./JG 3 86 774
13
11.4.1943
5:28
I-16 5./JG 3 76 764
14
16.4.1943
14:44
P-40 5./JG 3 -
15
19.4.1943
17:10
LaGG-3 5./JG 3 85 541
16
20.4.1943
11:56
LaGG-3 5./JG 3 75 462
17
20.4.1943
11:57
Il-2 5./JG 3 75 462
18
21.4.1943
11:02
Il-2 5./JG 3 75 459
19
21.4.1943
11:07
Il-2 5./JG 3 75 461
20
23.4.1943
14:42
I-16 5./JG 3 85 341
21
24.4.1943
5:40
Il-2 5./JG 3 85 123
22
27.4.1943
13:06
LaGG-3 5./JG 3 85 312
23
27.4.1943
17:23
LaGG-3 5./JG 3 86 793
24
28.4.1943
16:22
Yak-1 5./JG 3 85 122
25
29.4.1943
5:32
LaGG-3 5./JG 3 85 111
26
29.4.1943
10:16
Yak-1 5./JG 3 85 151
27
8.5.1943
14:20
LaGG-3 5./JG 3 85 113
28
8.5.1943
18:03
LaGG-3 5./JG 3 75 261
29
23.5.1943
6:57
LaGG-5 5./JG 3 62 674
30
31.5.1943
6:41
Yak-4 5./JG 3 70 593
31
4.6.1943
17:50
Yak-1 5./JG 3 70 316
32
8.6.1943
18:20
Yak-1 5./JG 3 70 316
33
10.6.1943
5:25
Yak-1 5./JG 3 70 318
34
16.6.1943
3:54
Il-2 5./JG 3 70 147
35
19.6.1943
13:41
LaGG-5 5./JG 3 60 434
36
30.6.1943
17:34
Il-2 5./JG 3 70 176
37
5.7.1943
3:30
Il-2 5./JG 3 60 237
38
5.7.1943
3:37
Il-2 5./JG 3 60 135
39
5.7.1943
3:52
Il-2 5./JG 3 60 165
40
5.7.1943
4:05
Il-2 5./JG 3 60 334
41
5.7.1943
14:05
Il-2 5./JG 3 61 362
42
5.7.1943
18:50
Il-2 5./JG 3 61 618
43
5.7.1943
18:55
Il-2 5./JG 3 61 618
44
6.7.1943
15:10
Il-2 5./JG 3 61 486
45
7.7.1943
3:42
Il-2 5./JG 3 61 473
46
7.7.1943
3:45
Il-2 5./JG 3 61 417
47
7.7.1943
19:43
LaGG-5 5./JG 3 61 732
48
9.7.1943
6:18
LaGG-5 5./JG 3 62 795
49
11.7.1943
16:32
Pe-2 5./JG 3 62 761
50
12.7.1943
5:30
LaGG-5 5./JG 3 62 561
51
14.7.1943
4:56
Il-2 5./JG 3 61 428
52
14.7.1943
4:57
Il-2 5./JG 3 61 492
53
15.7.1943
18:50
Il-7 5./JG 3 61 882
54
16.7.1943
6:15
Yak-1 5./JG 3 62 856
55
16.7.1943
8:50
Yak-1 5./JG 3 61 223
56
23.7.1943
12:30
Il-7 5./JG 3 88 286
57
31.7.1943
5:39
Il-2 5./JG 3 88 283
58
31.7.1943
5:56
Il-2 5./JG 3 88 262
59
31.7.1943
11:21
Yak-1 5./JG 3 88 221
60
31.7.1943
11:26
Il-2 5./JG 3 88 253
61
1.8.1943
18:53
Il-2 5./JG 3 88 235
62
30.11.1943
11:25
P-47 5./JG 3 Neerpelt / P-47 of 352 FG, USAAF
63
20.12.1943
-
Spitfire 5./JG 3 -
64
24.2.1944
13:50
B-24 5./JG 3 40km W Bad Hersfeld
65
23.3.1944
11:20
B-17 HSS 5./JG 3 Soest
66
5.4.1944
15:38
P-51 5./JG 3 NNE Konigslütter
67
8.4.1944
-
B-24 5./JG 3 -
68
11.4.1944
11:08
B-17 5./JG 3 Gardelegen area
69
18.4.1944
14:33
B-17 5./JG 3 Nauen area
70
29.5.1944
12:27
B-24 5./JG 3 N Stettin
71
7.8.1944
18:28
P-47 5./JG 3 NW Chartres
72
14.8.1944
7:26
P-38 5./JG 3 Montmirail
73
16.8.1944
17:15
P-47 5./JG 3 NE Chartres
74
18.8.1944
19:30
P-51 5./JG 3 Beauvais
75
20.8.1944
15:49
P-47 5./JG 3 Houdan
76
VIII.44
-
E/a 5./JG 3 -
77
VIII.44
-
E/a 5./JG 3 -
78
31.3.1945
-
Lancaster I./JG7 Hamburg
79
31.3.1945
-
Lancaster I./JG7 Hamburg
80
10.4.1945
-
B-17 I./JG7 -
81
10.4.1945
-
B-17 I./JG7 -
82
19.4.1945
12:15-50
B-17 I./JG7 SW Prague

Victories : 82
Awards : Ehrenpokal (9 August 1943)
                Deutsches Kreuz in Gold (31 August 1943)
                Ritterkreuz (9 June 1944)
Units : JG 3, JG 7, JV 44

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