Alfred Grislawski


JG 52, JGr Süd, JG 50, JG 1, JG 53
i i i
30 May 1942
Ritterkreuz des Eisernen Kreuzes
01 Jul 1942
11 Apr 1944
* Note: The Ehrenpokal (Silver Honor Goblet) was awarded to Luftwaffe Pilots for distinguished achievements in the air war.
Combat Missions
Pilot status
WIA (26.09.44)

Combat Victories and details during Operation ‘Market Garden'

Victory No
Aircraft Type
Location of Kill




11./JG 53

S Dülmen

Wounded and shot down from this engagement.

Alfred Grislawski started his military career in 1936 when he applied for service in the Kreigsmarine as a sailor. His was rejected but was offered service in the Naval Aviation instead. Grislawski began his compulsory military training at Fliegerersatzabteilung 16 at Schleswig. By 1938, Gefreiter Grislawski was serving as a recruit trainer via flight training schools at Delmhorst, Salzwedel and Prenzlau.

After fighter pilot training, Grislawski was transferred to the III./JG 52 in June 1940 which was due for rest and refit. In October 1940 when the unit was moved to Romania, Grislawski was once again involved in training; this time Romanian pilots. Itching for combat, Grislawski was excited when the unit was transferred to the combat front as part of Operation ‘Barbarossa'. As wingman and friend of the infamous pilot, Hermann Graf, Grislawski received his first victory with 9./JG 52 when he shot down a Russian I-16 fighter during a ‘free hunt' on the 1st September 1941.

Grislawski's unit was transferred to the Crimea and he had increased his total to 11 by the end of 1941. Operating around Kharkov and in the Crimea, Grislawski has achieved 20 victories by the 30 th April 1942. In May 1942, Alfred Grislawski was particularly successful when he shot down a total of 22 aircraft in the one month which included 4 on the 1 st May 1942. Grislawski was awarded the Knight's Cross on the 1st July 1942 for achieving 43 victories.

September 1943 - Grislawski (right) relaxing in front of his Bf109G-6/AS with 112 victories.

For the later half of 1942, Grislawski had tremendous success over the Russian Front, with the well known JG 52, shooting down a total of 42 aircraft in 5 months. During this time he was only shot down once and had a successful belly landing walking away with a few bruises. He spent a lot of that time training new pilots that came to the unit. One of those to arrive in October 1942 was an Erich Hartmann. On 18 January 1943, Grislawski led his section providing escort to a formation of Ju 87 Stuka dive-bombers against Russian tank forces in the Stavropolskaya area. The formation was intercepted by Russian I-16 fighters and in the subsequent combat; Grislawski’s Bf 109 was hit, setting it on fire. He nursed his damaged aircraft back over German lines before baling out, sustaining burns to his face.

On the 27th April 1943, Grislawski recorded his 100th Victory over the Caucasus joining the ‘100 club’ with a few other pilots within the unit. After claiming his 108th and 109th victory, Grislawski was wounded in an explosion of a landmine on a beach. After his recovery, Grislawski was transferred to JGr Süd. On 15 August 1943, JGr Süd was redesignated JG 50, under the command of his old friend, Major Hermann Graf for the express purpose of intercepting high-flying British Mosquito photo-reconnaissance aircraft. During his time with the unit, Grislawski commanded 1./JG 50, based at Wiesbaden-Erbenheim, and shot down his first two USAAF four-engine bombers on 17 August 1943. In early October, Grislawski was promoted to the rank of Hauptmann and given temporary command of JG 50, when Graf was appointed acting Kommodore of JG 1.

In November 1943, Grislawski was posted to JG 1 where he flew both Fw190s and Bf109G-6/AS. On the 11th April 1944, Hauptmann Grislawski was awarded the Oak Leaves for 122 victories before being married in May. June 1944 saw the allied landings in which JG 1 was badly mauled in the first week. In early July, Grislawski led the unit back to France. On 27th July, Grislawski led a free hunt over the Caen area and came into combat where Grislawski was shot down by RAF Spitfire fighters, baling out but surviving with only a few bruises. At the end of July 1944, Grislawski was transferred as Staffelkapitän of 11./JG 53. He achieved 12 B-17 kills during his time at JG 1. He recorded another two USAAF B-17 four-engine bombers shot down on 12 September 1944 (131-132)

Grislawski's Fw 190A-7 with JG 1 in Jan 1944

On 26 September 1944, he participated in a mission from Paderborn to provide air cover for German troops near Eindhoven and Nijmegen. USAAF fighters intercepted the formation southwest of Münster. In the subsequent combat, Grislawski was credited with a USAAF P-38 twin-engine fighter shot down as his 133rd, and last, victory, although Grislawski refutes the claim! However, his Bf 109 G-14 (W.Nr. 462 649) “Black 6” was then hit in the engine by a P-51 and caught fire. He baled out but did not deploy his parachute until he was at very low level. As a consequence he endured a very hard landing that cracked the second and third lower vertebrae in his back. He saw out the remainder of the war in a military hospital in Austria and was imprisoned by US Troops in Salzburg and released shortly after.

Alfred Grislawski was credited with 133 victories in over 800 missions. He recorded 24 victories over the Western Front including 18 four-engine bombers. Of the 109 victories recorded over the Eastern Front, 16 were Il-2 Sturmoviks.

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