Fregattenkapitän (Crew 27)
24 ships sunk, total tonnage 111,546 GRT
1 auxiliary warship sunk, total tonnage 16,644 GRT
|Born||22 Mar 1908||Magdeburg|
|Died||1 May 1987||(79)||Bad Schwartau, Germany|
|U-108||22 Oct 1940||14 Oct 1942||8 patrols (361 days)|
Kapitänleutnant Klaus Scholtz
Klaus Scholtz began his naval career in 1927 and spent most of his time before war began on torpedo boats (G-8, G-11 and Jaguar). He was Jaguar’s commanding officer from June 1937 to April 1939.
In April 1940 he transferred to the U-boat force. After only four months of training he commissioned U-108, a large type IXB boat. On his first patrol in February 1941 he sank two ships with a total of 8,078 tons.
His second patrol was very successful: in April 1941 he sank the British armed merchant cruiser AMC Rajputana (16,644 tons) in the Straits of Denmark.
This dramatic chase is described in the following radio message sent by U-108:
FT an BdU. Eingetroffen Operationsgebiet Donnerstag, 10. April; Samstag, 12. April Hilfskreuzer gesichtet. Erster Angriff ein Torpedo, Fehlschuß. Zweiter Angriff: Zweierfächer. Gegner weggezackt. Verfolgung bis Eisgrenze. Angriff bei Dunkelheit abgebrochen. 13. April Hilfskreuzer gesichtet und Angriff. Dreierfächer. Zwei Treffer, ein Torpedoversager. Hilfskreuzer gestoppt. Fangschuß. Gegner gesunken. An Untergangsstelle zwei Zerstörer und Sunderland. Name des Hilfskreuzers 'Rajputana'.
(Radiogram to BdU. Reached operational area on Thursday 10 April; Saturday 12 April armed merchant cruiser in sight. First attack one torpedo, failure firing. Second attack: double shot. Enemy zigzagging. Pursuit to the edge of the ice. Attack terminated by darkness. 13 April sighted and attacked armed merchant cruiser. Triple shot. Two hits, one torpedo failure. Armed merchant cruiser stopped. Coup de grace. Enemy sunk. At sinking position two destroyers and a Sunderland. Name of the armed merchant cruiser 'Rajputana'.)
The BdU answered a half hour later:
Gut gemacht! Kommandant und Besatzung ausspreche Anerkennung. Rückmarsch. Dönitz.
Well done. Express acknowledgment to commander and crew. Return to base. Dönitz.
Kptlt. Scholtz on the conning tower
On the next three patrols Scholtz led U-108 against convoys in the Atlantic. In January 1942 she left Lorient to join the second wave of U-boats attacking shipping off the US east coast in the follow-up to Operation Paukenschlag (Drumbeat). There Scholtz sank five ships with a total of 20,082 tons.
This flotilla included most of the long-range type IX boats, which operated in the South Atlantic and the Indian Ocean. During August 1944 most of the boats left the base for Flensburg. The flotilla's history ended in August 1944 when it was dissolved. The remaining men (some 220) under Fregkpt. Klaus Scholtz attempted to march overland back to Germany. They left Bordeaux on 26 August 1944 but were captured on 11 September by American forces in Beaujancie/Loire (France). Klaus Scholtz then spent the next 18 months in US captivity.
After the war he served from 1953 to 1956 in the naval arm of the Bundesgrenzschutz (Federal Frontier Guard), then transferred to the Bundesmarine (Federal German Navy). He commanded several naval bases, including Kiel, Cuxhaven and Wilhelmshaven. In 1966 he retired with the rank of Kapitän zur See.
Busch, R. and Röll, H-J. (1999). German U-boat commanders of World War II.
Busch, R. and Röll, H-J. (1997). Der U-Bootkrieg 1939-1945 (Band 2).
Rohwer, J. (1998). Axis Submarine Successes of World War Two.
Patrol info for Klaus Scholtz
|1.||U-108||15 Feb 1941||Wilhelmshaven||12 Mar 1941||Lorient||Patrol 1,||26 days|
|2.||U-108||3 Apr 1941||Lorient||2 May 1941||Lorient||Patrol 2,||30 days|
|3.||U-108||25 May 1941||Lorient||7 Jul 1941||Lorient||Patrol 3,||44 days|
|4.||U-108||19 Aug 1941||Lorient||21 Oct 1941||Lorient||Patrol 4,||64 days|
|5.||U-108||9 Dec 1941||Lorient||25 Dec 1941||Lorient||Patrol 5,||17 days|
|6.||U-108||8 Jan 1942||Lorient||4 Mar 1942||Lorient||Patrol 6,||56 days|
|7.||U-108||30 Mar 1942||Lorient||1 Jun 1942||Lorient||Patrol 7,||64 days|
|8.||U-108||13 Jul 1942||Lorient||10 Sep 1942||Lorient||Patrol 8,||60 days|
|8 patrols, 361 days at sea|
Ships hit by Klaus Scholtz
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