Priller, Josef "Pips"

    Date of birth:
    June 27th, 1915 (Ingolstadt/Bavaria, Germany)
    Date of death:
    May 20th, 1961 (Böbing/Bavaria, Germany)
    Nationality:
    German (1933-1945, German Reich)

    Biography

    Josef Priller was born in Ingolstadt, July 27th, 1915. He entered military service in 1935 as Fahnenjunker in Infanterie-Regiment 19. He soon went over the Luftwaffe and started flight training in October 1936 at Salzwedel. In 1937 Priller was posted to I. / Jagdgeschwader 135, which was renamed in November 1938 I. / Jagdgeschwader 233 and again in May 1939 I. / Jagdgeschwader 51. Shortly before the outbreak of World War Two, Prilller was transferred to I. / Jagdgeschwader 71, which was renamed II. / Jagdgeschwader 51.
    At the outbreak of the war, Priller was Staffelkapitän of 6. / Jagdgeschwader 51, scoring his first victory over Dunkirque on May 28th, On November 20th, 1940, he was appointed Staffelkapitän 1. / Jagdgeschwader 26. From December 6th, 1941, onwards, Priller served as Kommandeur III. / Jagdgeschwader 26 and on January 11th, 1943, he was appointed Kommodore Jagdgeschwader 26.
    During the Allied landings in Normandy, June 6th, 1944, Josef Priller, in his Focke Wulf Fw 190A-8, together with his wingman Herbert Huppertz launched one of the few attacks by the Luftwaffe on the landing troops, a single attack on Sword Beach.
    He scored his 100th victory in the air on July 18th, 1944 shooting down a Consolidated B-24 Liberator bomber. On January 1st, 1945, Josef Priller commanded Jagsgeschwader 26 and III. / Jagdgeschwader 54 during Operation Bodenplatte, the attack on the Allied airfields of Brussels-Evère and Brussels Grimbergen. January 28th, 1945 he was appointed Inspekteur der Jagdflieger Ost.
    He scored 101 victories in 1,307 operational sorties.
    After World War Two, Priller took charge of the family brewery. He passed away, following a heart attack on May 20th, 1961 in Böbing.

    Bevorderingen:
    1935: Fahnenjunker;
    1936: Oberfahnenjunker;
    1937: Leutnant;
    1940: Oberleutnant;
    December 1941: Hauptmann;
    January 1943: Major;
    August 1943: Oberstleutnant;
    January 1st, 1945: Oberst.

    Loopbaan:
    1935 - Ocktober 1936: Infanterieregiment 19;
    October 1936 - April 1937: Piloten training, Salzwedel;
    April 1st, 1937 - November 1938: I. / Jagdgeschwader 135;
    November 1938: I. / Jagdgeschwader 233;
    May 1939 - July 1939: I. / Jagdgeschwader 51;
    July 1939 - October 1939: I. / Jagdgeschwader 71;
    October 1st, 1939 - November 20th, 1940: Staffelkapitän 6. / Jagdgeschwader 51;
    November 20th, 1940 - December 6th, 1941: Staffelkapitän 1. / Jagdgeschwader 26 „Schlageter“;
    December 6th, 1941 - January 10th, 1943: Kommandeur III. / Jagdgeschwader 26 „Schlageter“;
    January 11th, 1943 - January 27th, 1945: Kommodore Jagdgeschwader 26 „Schlageter“;
    January 28th, 1945 - May 1945: Inspekteur der Jagdflieger Ost;
    May 1945: Prisoner of war.

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    Period:
    Second World War (1939-1945)
    Rank:
    Oberleutnant (Flying Officer)
    Unit:
    Staffelkapitän 6. / Jagdgeschwader 51
    Awarded on:
    May 30th, 1940
    Eisernes Kreuz 2. Klasse
    Period:
    Second World War (1939-1945)
    Rank:
    Oberleutnant (Flying Officer)
    Unit:
    Staffelkapitän 6. / Jagdgeschwader 51
    Awarded on:
    July 10th, 1940
    Eisernes Kreuz 1. Klasse
    Period:
    Second World War (1939-1945)
    Rank:
    Oberleutnant (Flying Officer)
    Unit:
    Staffelkapitän 6. / Jagdgeschwader 51
    Awarded on:
    October 19th, 1940
    Action:
    Received for his 20th airvictory, achieved on October 17th, 1940.
    Details:
    144th Award.
    Ritterkreuz des Eisernen Kreuzes
    Period:
    Second World War (1939-1945)
    Rank:
    Oberleutnant (Flying Officer)
    Unit:
    Staffelkapitän 1. / Jagdgeschwader 26 "Schlageter"
    Awarded on:
    July 20th, 1941
    Action:
    Received for his 40th airvictory achieved on July 14th, 1941.
    Details:
    28th Award.
    Ritterkreuz mit Eichenlaub
    Period:
    Second World War (1939-1945)
    Rank:
    Oberleutnant (Flying Officer)
    Unit:
    Staffelkapitän 6. / Jagdgeschwader 51
    Awarded on:
    December 9th, 1941
    Details:
    Award 7/6.
    Deutsches Kreuz in Gold
    Period:
    Second World War (1939-1945)
    Rank:
    Hauptmann (Flight Lieutenant)
    Unit:
    Kommandeur III. / Jagdgeschwader 26 „Schlageter“
    Awarded on:
    May 2nd, 1942
    Action:
    Mentioning:
    "Hauptmann Priller achieved his 70th aerial victory in the west yesterday."
    Wehrmachtbericht
    Period:
    Second World War (1939-1945)
    Rank:
    Oberstleutnant (Wing Commander)
    Unit:
    Kommodore Jagdgeschwader 26 "Schlageter"
    Awarded on:
    July 2nd, 1944
    Details:
    73rd Award.
    Ritterkreuz mit Eichenlaub und Schwertern
    Period:
    Second World War (1939-1945)
    Rank:
    Oberstleutnant (Wing Commander)
    Unit:
    Kommodore Jagdgeschwader 26 "Schlageter"
    Awarded on:
    October 8th, 1944
    Action:
    Mentioning:
    "The fighter wing "Schlageter", under the leadership of Lieutenant Colonel Priller, shot down 300 Anglo-American aircraft since the beginning of the invasion and thereby achieved its 2,500th aerial victory in the west."
    Wehrmachtbericht
    Period:
    Second World War (1939-1945)
    Details:
    Number of 300 on the hanger.
    Frontflugspange für Jäger in Gold mit anhänger und einzatszahl

    Sources

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