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Albert Lewis Schlegel Jr

Military

Albert Schlegel was born in Cleveland, Ohio, in 1919. Lacking the two college certificates required by the US Army Air Corp, he joined the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF), flight training was in Ontario, Canada, final service training taking place in England at an RAF Operational training Unit (OTU) on Hurricanes. By the time of his transfer to the US Army Air Force in January 1943 he had logged 249.3 flying hours and was a Flight Sgt. Upon transfer he gained the rank of Flight Officer. He was stationed at Debden and flew Spitfires until they were replaced by P-47 Thunderbolts in March 1943. He was assigned to the 335th Fighter Squadron of the 4th Fighter Group and was promoted to First Lieutenant.

His first victory occurred on 2 October 1943, an Me-109. In March 1944 the group switched to P-51 Mustangs and Schlegel became a Flight Leader. His activities picked up, and he began to have victories to the extent that he became an "Ace" on 22 April 1944, and two days later he added two more 109s and shared a third.

Now a Captain, he went on leave to the United States. When he returned he became the 335th's Squadron Operations Officer, an office he held for only ten days. On 28 August 1944, he was shot down by flak, baled out, captured, interrogated at Valmy train station, subsequently executed by the enemy. Killed in Action (KIA). He had scored 13.5 confirmed [8.5 Air] [5 Ground] and 2.5 probables.

Awards: DFC [4 OLC], AM [3 OLC], PH.

His name is on the Tablets of the Missing at Lorraine American Cemetery. In January 2016, the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency exhumed the remains of an Unknown Soldier buried in Plot B Row 5 Grave 66 at Epinal American Cemetery with the belief that an identification could be made. Laboratory analysis and circumstantial evidence were used to positively identify the remains as belonging to Capt. Albert L. Schlegel.

His name remains permanently inscribed on the Tablets of the Missing. When an individual’s remains have been accounted for by the U.S. Department of Defense, a rosette is placed next to the name on the Wall/Tablet/Court of the Missing to mark that the person now rests in a known gravesite.

Service

Units served with

  • 8th Air Force

    8th Air Force


    Eighth Air Force Bomber Command became the Eighth Air Force on February 1944, it oversaw bombardment of strategic targets in Europe until 1945. ...

  • 4th Fighter Group

    4th Fighter Group

    Group
    Some of the pilots of the 4th Fighter Group had seen many hours of combat by the time they joined the 4th Fighter Group as they had volunteered with the Royal Canadian Air Force and the Royal Air Force. The three 'Eagle Squadrons' of RAF Fighter...

  • 335th Fighter Squadron

    335th Fighter Squadron

    Squadron
    The 335th Fighter Squadron was the offspring of No. 121 (Eagle) Squadron RAF. Formed on 21 May 1941, No. 121 was the second of the three Eagle Squadrons composed of American volunteers flying out of England. They were known as the "Chiefs" and were...

Aircraft

  • 42-106464

    P-51 Mustang
    Assigned to 335FS, 4FG, 8AF USAAF. Aborted escort mission to Karlsruhe, due to engine problems, on return to base, pilot Lt Eliot H Shapleigh abandoned A/C. Evaded capture EVD. 27-May-44. MACR 5724.

  • 44-14066

    P-51 Mustang
    Assigned to 335FS, 4FG, 8AF USAAF. A/C struck by flak while strafing targets NW of Strasbourg, France. 28-Aug-44 - Pilot Capt Albert Schlegel Killed in Action KIA. MACR 8299.

  • 43-6770

    P-51 Mustang
    One-time personal aircraft of Lt Albert Schlegel and Lt Eliot H Shapleigh. ...

  • 43-6725


    Assigned 335FS, 4FG, 8AF USAAF.

Missions

  • 587

    28 August 1944
    Mustangs P-51D of the 4th FG, 335th FS were engaged in a strafing mission on transportation targets along the French-German border, in order to prevent numerous German units to go back to Germany after the Battle of Normandy and liberation of Paris....

Associated Place

Events

Event Location Date
Born Cleveland, OH, USA 20 August 1919

Son of Albert Lewis Sr and Lillian Olive [Honsberg] Schlegel.

Enlisted Toronto, ON, Canada 3 March 1941

Joined Royal Canadian Air Force RCAF, 3-Mar-41. Aircraftsman 2nd Class.

Service flight training Goderich, ON, Canada 24 March 1941

Ground and primary flight training RCAF Air Station, Goderich, Ontario on the shores of Lake Huron.

Flight training Aylmer, ON N5H, Canada June 1941

Single engine fighter training at Alymer, Ontario.

Graduated [pilot] / Promotion Ontario, Canada 23 October 1941

Awarded wings when he graduated on 23-Oct-41, as Sgt pilot.

Overseas deployment to ETO England, UK 23 November 1941

Deployed to England, 23-Nov-41. Posted to the Bournemouth
Personnel Reception Centre.

Operational service training England, UK 7 December 1941

Posted to an RAF Operational Training Unit (OTU).

Wounded in crash / Hospitalised England, UK 8 February 1942 – August 1942

Wounded in accident in Lorry with ran into a bomb crater. Suffered broken right leg and foot, facial injuries, a concussion. Hospitalised. 8-Feb-42.

Returned to flight status England, UK September 1942

Returned to flight status in September 1942.

OTU training England, UK 7 October 1942 – 29 December 1942

Resumed OTU training on 7-Oct-42 completing it on 29-Dec-42.

Promotion Debden, Saffron Walden CB11, UK 29 December 1942

Commissioned Flight Officer 29-Dec-42.

Transferred USAAF / Promoted F/O Debden, Saffron Walden CB11, UK 25 January 1943

Transferred USAAF Jan-43. Promoted to Flight Officer.

Honourably discharged RCAF Debden, Saffron Walden CB11, UK 25 January 1943

Honourably discharged from the RCAF 25-Jan-43. 249.30 flying hours mostly in Hurricanes.

Transitional training Debden, Saffron Walden CB11, UK February 1943 – 3 July 1943

Transitioned to USAAF fighters, Spitfires, P-39's and laterly P-47's.

Based Debden 3 July 1943 – 28 August 1944

Assigned to 335FS, 4FG, 8AF USAAF.

Promotion Debden, Saffron Walden CB11, UK August 1943

Promoted to 2nd Lieutenant.

E/A destroyed Germany 2 October 1943

Me109 destroyed.

Promotion Debden, Saffron Walden CB11, UK 28 January 1944

Promoted to 1st Lieutenant.

Crashed Debden, Saffron Walden CB11, UK 4 March 1944

Landing Accident Gear collapsed Debden/Sta 356 Cat 3 damage Capt Albert L Schlegel, 4-Mar-44.

P-51B 43-6770 - 335FS 4FG 8AF.

Flight Leader Debden, Saffron Walden CB11, UK 5 March 1944

Flight Leader 335FS, 4FG, 8AF.

E/A destroyed 17100 Saintes, France 21 March 1944

He111 destroyed. South of Saintes.

E/A destroyed [2], shared [1], damaged [1] Brunswick, Germany 8 April 1944

1 x Fw190 destroyed, 1 x Fw190 shared, 1 x Me109 shared, 1 x Fw190 damaged [ground], Brunswick, Germany. Also train Loco damaged.

E/A destroyed [2] Kassel, Germany 22 April 1944

2 x Me109 destroyed. Kassel, Germany.

E/A destroyed [2], shared [1] Worms, Germany 24 April 1944

2 x Fw190 destroyed. 1 x Fw190 shared. Worms, Germany.

Promotion Debden, Saffron Walden CB11, UK 28 April 1944

Promoted to Captain.

Died 51800 Valmy, France 28 August 1944

Shot down by flak, baled out in vicinity of Valmy, executed by enemy. Killed In Action (KIA). 28-Aug-44. MACR 8299.

Buried Valmy, France 28 August 1944

Unmarked grave, near train station, Valmy, France.

Buried 51150 Champigneul-Champagne, France 18 November 1944

Interred unknown as X-73
American Cemetery
Champigueul

Buried 1945

Tablets of the Missing
Lorraine American Cemetery

Buried Epinal American Cemetery and Memorial 6 December 1948

Re-Interred unknown as X-73
Epinal American Cemetery and Memorial.

Buried Beaufort National Cemetery, Beaufort, SC 30 March 2017

Post Identification
Returned home and
buried at Beaufort VA National Cemetery.

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
04 January 2021 20:03:20 Al_Skiff Changes to middlename, events and unit associations
Sources

https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/56660489/albert-l-schlegel
https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/177612592/albert-lewis-schlegel

Date Contributor Update
03 December 2020 22:09:57 decwriter Changes to service number and awards
Sources

Per the photo, he is wearing one bronze star on the EAME Campaign Medal. His Flight Officer number is verified through NARA files.

Date Contributor Update
02 April 2017 13:22:55 Al_Skiff Changes to biography, events and place associations
Sources

http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/src/dbmpilot.asp?Pilot=Schlegel&Submi...
MACR 8299 - https://www.fold3.com/image/28688208
http://www.cieldegloire.com/fg_004.php
http://www.cieldegloire.com/014_schlegel_a_l.php
http://www.spitfireperformance.com/mustang/combat-reports/4-schlegel-8ap...
http://www.spitfireperformance.com/mustang/combat-reports/4-schlegel-22a...
http://www.spitfireperformance.com/mustang/combat-reports/4-schlegel-24a...
Perry R Nuhn Colonel [Retd] USAF nephew of Albert L Shlegel via email

Date Contributor Update
02 April 2017 10:29:53 Al_Skiff Changes to biography and events
Sources

http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/src/dbmpilot.asp?Pilot=Schlegel&Submi...
MACR 8299 - https://www.fold3.com/image/28688208
Perry R Nuhn Colonel [Retd] USAF nephew of Albert L Shlegel via email

Date Contributor Update
01 April 2017 17:28:47 Al_Skiff Changes to suffix, nickname, role, events and unit associations
Sources

Perry R Nuhn Colonel [Retd] USAF nephew of Albert L Shlegel via email

Date Contributor Update
21 March 2017 17:37:22 Lucy May Changes to role, biography, awards, events and place associations
Sources

https://www.abmc.gov/node/538044#.WNFiV01viM8

Date Contributor Update
27 June 2016 22:45:52 perryr Changes to nickname
Sources

Nick name was furnished with photo from 4th Fighter Group Association. Details of their file below.
I am a nephew of Schlegel and was writing article for the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force Museum, Pooler, GA. when I received two photos from them, nether of which you have in your files.
Regards, Perry R. Nuhn. Colonel USAF (ret) - pnuhn@earthlink.net

4th Fighter Group Association details
Hometown: Cleveland, Ohio
Rank: Captain
MOS: 1055 - Pilot, single engine fighter
Unit: 335th Fighter Squadron
Aircraft:
P-47D -1-RE 42-7879 WD-O
P-51B-7-NA 43-6770 WD-O
P-51B-10-NA 42-106464 WD-O
P-51D-10-NA 44-14066 WD-O
4th Service: 3 July 1943 — 28 August 1944
AUG 43 Promoted to 2nd Lieutenant
28 JAN 44 Promoted to 1st Lieutenant
5 MAR 44 Designated Flight Commander B Flight (PD)
28 APR 44 Promoted to Captain
1 MAY 44 Designated squadron Asst Operations officer
18 AUG 44 Designated squadron Operations officer (PD)
28 AUG 44 Struck by flak while strafing targets NW of Strasbourg, France. KIA (MACR 8299)
Victories:
13.5 (8.5 air / 5 ground)
Highlights:
8 APR 44 - 1 FW-190, 2 ME-109’s (shared)
22 APR 44 - 2 ME-109G’s
24 APR 44 - 2 FW-190’s, 1 FW-190 (shared)
Decorations
Distinguished Flying Cross (4 OLC), Air Medal (3 OLC), Presidential Unit Citation.
SCHLEGEL, Albert L.
“Smiley”
B: 20 August 1919 Cleveland, OH
D: 28 August 1944 near Strasbourg, FR

Date Contributor Update
10 March 2015 20:01:45 apollo11 Changes to highest rank, biography, awards, events and place associations
Sources

Personal research & 'Eighty-One Aces of the 4th fighter Group' by Frank Speer.

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:03:09 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia / MACR 8299 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database / Ted Damick, VIII Fighter Command pilots list

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