Stoeckl, Alois, born 22-08-1895 in Mühldorf, was a highly decorated Oberst in the Luftwaffe. He was also a recipient of the Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross. The Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross was awarded to recognize extreme battlefield bravery or successful military leadership.
He was awarded the Iron Cross (1914) 1st and 2nd Class, plus the Gallipoli Star/Eiserner Halbmond and the Honour Cross of the World War 1914/1918, involved in the Schlacht/Battle bei Verdun , as a leutnant in the 1. Bayrischen Fußartillerie-Regiment .Stoeckl served from 29-11-1916, with the German Luftwaffe in the (bayrischen) Fliegerabteilung 48 and (bayrischen) Fliegerabteilung 304. Stoeckl was the commander of the Luftwaffe Kampfgeschwader 55, Battle Wing 55, nickname “Greif” a bomber unit. Between 10 July and 31-10-1940 KG 55 lost 73 machines to enemy action, and a further eight were shot down during 1940 in night operations over Britain. The last Heinkel lost, piloted by Unteroffizier Bruno Zimmermann, was shot down by Pilot Officer J.G Benson and Sergeant P. Blain in a Defiant of No.141 Squadron RAF over Sussex on 22-12-1940.
Death and burial ground of Stoeckl, Alois.
Alois Stoeckl was killed on 14-08-1940, age 44, after the Heinkel He 111 that he was an observer in was attacked by British Spitfires from No. 609 Squadron RAF under command of Wing Commander Roland Prosper “Bee” Beamont ,. Bee Beamont died 19-11-2001, aged 81 in Hampshire.
By the end of the war 603 pilots had claimed some 232 kills for 73 aircrew killed in action. Stoeckl was shot down by the British ace John Dundas DFC
and his wingman. Dundas’ younger brother Hugh Dundas was also a fighter pilot. Hugh was wounded in August 1940 but recovered and eventually rose to the rank of Group Captain. Hugh survived the war and died in 1995. Stoeckl and two of his crew, Oberst Walter Frank and Oberleutnant Bruno Broßle were buried at Romsey cemetery on 19 August in the graves 35, 97 and 130. Squadron Leader C.F Ashley led the burial party. John Dundas himself was shot down by, Rudolf “Rudi” Pflanz,
Oberleutnant en Jagdfliegerass, 52 victories, commander of the II Battalion of the 2nd Jagdgeschwader, nicknamed “Richthofengeschwader” and died age 25 on 28-11-1940. Jagdgeschwader 2 “‘Richthofen” was formally de-activated near Munich on 07-05-1945 by Geschwaderkommodore (and JG 2 top scorer with 112 kills) Kurt Bühligen Oberstleutnant Bühlingen died age 67, on 11-08-1985 in Nidda. JG 2 was the main Luftwaffe unit to see action against Allied Air Forces during the D-day landings on 6 June 1944 . Stationed at Cormeilles en Vexin 60 kilometres from the coast, I./JG 2 under Hauptmann Hauptmann Franz Hrdickla,
was one of the nearest fighter units to the Allied beachheads. Other over the Normandie beaches were, Oberst Josef “Pips” Priller and sergeant
More than 40 German divisions were destroyed during the Battle of Normandy. No exact figures are available, but historians estimate that the battle cost the German forces a total of around 450.000 men, of whom 240.000 were killed or wounded. The Allies had achieved this blow at a cost of 209.672 casualties among the ground forces, including 36.976 killed and 19.221 missing. In addition, 16.714 Allied airmen were killed or went missing in direct connection with Operation Overlord.
JG 2 Geschwaderkommodore Major Bühlingen shot down a P-47 Thunderbolt over the Orne before the Gruppe became embroiled in a dogfight with RAF Typhoons near Caen. Six were claimed, and JG 2 claimed 18 kills for the day without loss (Total Luftwaffe claims were 24 shot down). The overwhelming superiority of the Allied forces soon took effect, however, as Gruppenkommandeur Hauptmann Hubert Huppertz (68 victories) was shot down and killed two days later by a P-47. His successor was another irreplaceable veteran, Hauptmann Josef “Sepp” Wurmheller (102 kills, 93 with JG 2 against the Western Allies). He would die after colliding with his wingman during a dogfight, just two weeks later Stoeckl and and two of his crew were moved to the Cannock Chase German war cemetery, Block 2, Row 2, Graves 30, 32 and 35. Closeby the graves of SS Obergruppenführer and Waffen SS General, Chief of the Persönlicher Stab Reichsführer SS, (Himmler‘s personal staff), Maximillian von Herff and Generalfeldmarschall der Artillerie, Commander 16th Army, Ernst Bernard Wilhelm Busch.