Setz, Heinrich, born 12-03-1915 in Gundelsdorf near Kronach, the son of a Oberförster (head of a forest range), volunteered for military service in the Luftwaffe of the Third Reich in 1936. Following flight training and a period at a fighter pilot training school as an instructor joined Hermann Goering’s (did you know) Luftwaffe in the II./Jagdgeschwader 77, in July 1940 and claimed his first aerial victory over a Royal Air Force (RAF) (see Bomber Arthur Harris) aircraft over Norway’s west coast. In July 1941 he was appointed Staffelkapitän, squadron leader of the 4./Jagdgeschwader 77, which he led until November 1942. During Operation Barbarossa, the German invasion of the Soviet Union, he claimed 41 aerial victories. He was awarded the Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross on 31-12-1941 for 45 aerial victories. Oberleutnant Setz was awarded the Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak leaves, Ritterkreuz des Eisernen Kreuzes mit Eichenlaub, by Adolf Hitler (see Hitler) (did you know) on 23-06-1942 for 76 aerial victories. The award was presented at the Führerhauptquartier at Rastenburg on 28 and 29 June 1942. Hauptmann Gerhard Homuth he crashed age 28 on 02-08-1943 near Orel, surrendered command of I./Jagdgeschwader 27 (JG 27), nickname “Afrika” to Hauptmann Setz in November 1942. Setz, who had previously led 4./JG 77 on the Eastern front took over command in Bari, Italy on 20-11-1942. Setz transferred the group from Italy to Krefeld where they arrived on 28-11-1942. After a brief period of recreation the group began preparations for a transfer to France on 02-01-1943. The Stab of the 1st and 3rd Staffel transferred to Evreux, on 31-01-1943. The remaining groups followed and new pilots and new Bf 109 G-4 joined the group. Setz had the entire group conduct training flights and reported operational readiness on 20-02-1943.
Death and burial ground of Setz, Heinrich.
Heinrich Setz was killed in action on his 274th combat mission in a midair collision with a Supermarine Spitfire on 13-03-1943, age 28, after shooting down three Spitfires. The same age as his predecessor Heinrich Setz is buried on the war cemetery of Bourdon in France. Also buried there are Leutnant, Peter Goering (see Goering) (did you know) nephew of Flyer Ace, 52 victories, Oberleutnant, Rudolf Pflanz, Flyer Ace Hauptmann, 27 victories. “Battle of Britain”, Horst Tietzen and Hauptmann Fliegerass. Befehlhaber 3rd Staffel, Rudolf Trenn and SS Standartenführer, the Führer of the SS Heimwehr unit, in Danzig, Hans Friedmann Goetze.