3/4.03.1945 7./NJG5 Junkers Ju 88G-6 Wnr.620397 Fw. Conze Location: Welton, Lincolnshire, England.
Mission: Operation Gisela (Intruder operations against airfields in eastern England)

Date: 3/4th March 1945

Time: 01.45 hours

Unit: 7 Staffel./Nachtjagdgeschwader 5

Type: Junkers Ju 88G-6


Coded: C9 + RR

Location: Welton, Lincolnshire, England.

Pilot: Feldwebel. Heinrich Conze. 439 Lw.Baukomp.13/VI. – Killed. Born 19.01.1920 in Essen.

Radar/Op: Unteroffizier. Rudolf Scherer. 5154./Fl.A.Rgt.26. – Killed. Born 04.04.1922 in Dettingen.

Radio/Op: Obergefreiter. Werner Nollau. 1586.Ln.Ers.R.303. – Killed. Born 08.10.1923 in Oschatz/Leipzig.

Gunner : Unteroffizier. Alfred Altenkirch. 153./U.S.4d.Lw. – Killed. Born 20.09.1924 in Bergzow/Magdeburg.

Burial details: All crew rest in the Scampton Churchyard, Lincolnshire.


Took off Lubeck / Blankensee on “Operation Giesela”, an intruder mission over British bomber airfields. Attacked a car being driven by an Observer Corps Official and while diving to attack, the aircraft struck telegraph wires and crashed on top of the car. Both the aircraft and the car were completely wrecked with wreckage being scattered over a wide area. The driver of the car was also killed. Markings: Mottled pale blue all over. Engines: Jumo 213 A-1 engines, nos: 1021521729 maker jfr & 521859. Armament: four MG 151/20 fixed, forward firing in belly fairing, one MG 131 free in dorsal position. Equipment: FuG 10 P, FuB1 2F, FuG 101 A, Fug 16 ZY, FuG 220 installed.

The C9 + RR attacked a motor car driven by an Observer Corps official (Mr J. P. Kelway) near the village of Welton, apparantly under the impression that its headlamps indicated activity on Scampton airfield. While diving to attack, the aircraft struck telegraph wires and crashed on top of the car. Both car and aircraft were completely wrecked, parts of the burning aircraft being scattered over a wide area. All the members of the crew were killed together with Mr Kelway. The sole documentary identification of the unit to which this aircraft belonged was a camp cinema ticket which was stamped III./NJG5.

REPORT by John Benson

In March 1945 - only a few weeks before the VE Day -the Germans carried out large-scale intruder operations. Cruising around, waiting for Lancaster bombers returning from operations, were Luftwaffe Junkers Ju 88G-6 aircraft, each carrying a crew of four. One of them shot down a Lancaster near Langworth and then made off towards Welton. Flying low, it attacked a car on the Welton-Hackthorn road, spitting cannon fire and machine gun bullets. But it came too low and crashed into the car, flinging it across two fields. The driver was the only member of the Observer Corps to be killed on duty in the war. He was the father of two boys from my school. The Germans were buried in Scampton churchyard.

Many years later, a farmer ploughing his fields found a German identity tag and it was thought at first that it must have belonged to one of the aircrew who had perished. But this was a NEW name. Checks were made and it was found to belong to a member of the squadron's ground crew, who had been reported as "absent without leave". He had evidently "hitched" a lift in the JU 88, probably for a bit of excitement. So one of the gravestones of the Luftwaffe crew now has TWO names on it.

1 Heinrich Conze
Feldwebel. Heinrich Conze pictured in his barracks (Hall).

2 Rudolf Scherer
Rudolf Scherer also shares the same barrack room (Hall)


3 Fw. Heinrich Conzeccc4 Relatives of Heinrich visit grave
Heinrich Conze, the ill-fated pilot (Hall).
cccc cccccccccccccc Relatives of Heinrich visiting his grave (Hall).

5 Original burial markers
Original war graves of the crew members at Scampton Churchyard, Lincolnshire (Hall).

6 Conzeccc7 Scherer

Burial details: All crew rest in the Scampton Churchyard, Lincolnshire.

Researched and compiled by Melvin Brownless with thanks to Steve Hall for Conze photos and report by John Benson, May 2013.

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