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Freytag, Siegfried "Justav"

Date of birth:
November 10th, 1919 (Danzig-Langfuhr/Pommerania, Germany)
Date of death:
June 1st, 2003 (Puyloubier, France)
Buried on:
Memorial & Cemetery French Foreign Legion
German (1933-1945, Third Reich)


Siegfried Freytag was born November 10th, 1919 in Danzig-Langfuhr, Pommerania (presently Wrzeszcz, Poland).
Siegfried Freytag joined the Luftwaffe in 1939 and after having been trained in 1./Lehrgeschwader 2, he was posted to Jagdgeschwader 77. Freytag claimed his first kill on October 31st, 1940, when he destroyed, according to his log, a Lockheed Hudson of Coastal Command. He made his first confirmed kill however on July 13th, 1941 when he destroyed a MiG-3 (6./Jagdgeschwader 77).
During the fighting in the Balkans, Freytag was shot down over Athens in his Bf 109E-7 (Constr. number 1576) by anti-aircraft fire on April 24th, 1941. Despite slight injuries, he managed to save himself by parachute but eventually he became a prisoner of war in a Greek military hospital. Here he witnessed the entry of German troops in Athens and he returned to his unit - 6./Jagdgeschwader 77 - on May 5th, 1941.
On July 12th, 1943, he was shot down once more, this time during a dogfight with Lightning fighter aircraft over Gela on Siciliy. Although he was injured in the process, he managed to save himself with his parachute.
On Janaury 29th, 1944 he was injured during an Allied attack on Siena airfield. After a long stay in hospital, he returned to his unit on March 18th, 1944.
Siegfried Freytag was officially credited with 102 victories, including 49 on the Eastern front, having flown 879 missions. He was also recommended for the Oak Leaves but never received the award.
After world war two, he served as a rifleman in the Foreign Legion (SN 95 474). He received training in the 5 Régiment Etranger d’Infanterie at Sidi Bel Abbes and was subsequently posted to 13 demi-Brigade de la Légion Etrangère. He fought in this unit in Indo China and in Algeria. Siegfried Freytag passed away on June 1st, 2003 in the Institution des Invalides de la Légion Etrangère and was buried in the Legion’s cemetery.

1939: Obergefreiter;
January 1940: Fahnenjunker-Unteroffizier;
1940: Leutnant;
1942: Oberleutnant;
April 1st, 1943: Hauptmann;
May 1st, 1944: Major;
?: Legionnaire 2e Classe (Legion Etrangere);
1962: Sergent (Legion Etrangere);
1965: Caporal-Chef (Legion Etrangere - degradation by his own request).

1939: I. / Lehrgeschwader 2;
1940: 6. / Jagdgeschwader 77;
June 27th, 1942: Staffelkapitän 1. / Jagdgeschwader 77;
March 13th, 1943: Gruppenkommandeur II. / Jagdgeschwader 77;
December 26th, 1943: Kommodore Jagdgeschwader 77 (waarnemend);
1944: Gruppenkommandeur II. / Jagdgeschwader 77;
March 7th, 1945: Kommodore Jagdgeschwader 77 (waarnemend);
April 4th, 1945: Stab, Jagdgeschwader 51;
April 18th, 1945: Jagdgeschwader 7;
1952: 5e Régiment Etranger d'Infanterie;
?: 13e demi-Brigade de Légion Etrangère;
1965 - 1970: 1er Régiment Etranger;
1971 - June 1st, 2003: Institution des Invalides de la Legion Etrangere.

Some of his victoeries:
1st: July 13th, 1941, Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-3;
101st: September 27th, 1944, Supermarine Spitfire (probably Flight Lieutenant Henry Wallace McLeod);
102nd: January 1st, 1945: Supermarine Spitfire.

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Second World War (1939-1945)
Oberleutnant (Flying Officer)
Awarded on:
May 18th, 1942
Luftwaffe Ehrenpokale für besondere Leistungen im Luftkrieg
Second World War (1939-1945)
Oberleutnant (Flying Officer)
Flugzeugführer, I. Gruppe, Jagdgeschwader 77 "Herz As", Luftwaffe
Awarded on:
July 3rd, 1942
Awarded the Knight's Cross after flying 360 sorties. By this time he had destroyed 49 enemy aircraft in the air and 12 on the ground.
Ritterkreuz des Eisernen Kreuzes
Second World War (1939-1945)
Oberleutnant (Flying Officer)
1. Staffel, I. Gruppe, Jagdgeschwader 77 "Herz As", Luftwaffe
Awarded on:
January 25th, 1943
Deutsches Kreuz in Gold
Second World War (1939-1945)
Major (Squadron Leader)
Kommandeur, II. Gruppe, Jagdgeschwader 77 "Herz As", Luftwaffe
Awarded on:
May 31st, 1944
"A fighter group led by Major Freitag distinguished itself in combat against the British-North American terror-flyers."