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German Navy - Guided Missile Destroyer
D 186 FGS Mölders
 
d-186 fgs mölders insignia patch crest badge type 103 lütjens class guided missile destroyer german navy 06 d-186 fgs mölders type 103 lütjens class guided missile destroyer german navy deutsche marine 03
 
Type, class: Guided Missile Destroyer / DDG; Lütjens (modified US Charles F. Adams) class
Builder: Bath Iron Works, Bath, Maine, USA
 
STATUS:
Laid down: April 12, 1966
Launched: April 13, 1967
Commissioned: February 23, 1969
Decommissioned: May 28, 2003
  Fate: Museum ship at Marinearsenal Wilhelmshaven, Germany
 

Namesake: Colonel Werner Mölders (1913-1941)
Ships Motto:
Technical Data: see INFO > Lütjens class Guided Missile Destroyer / DDG
 

ship images


d-186 fgs mölders type 103 lütjens class guided missile destroyer german navy deutsche marine 02

d-186 fgs mölders type 103 lütjens class guided missile destroyer german navy deutsche marine 04

d-186 fgs mölders type 103 lütjens class guided missile destroyer german navy deutsche marine 03a

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Colonel Werner Mölders (1913 - 1941):

Werner Mölders (18 March 1913 - 22 November 1941) was a World War II German Luftwaffe pilot and the leading German fighter ace in the Spanish Civil War. Mölders became the first pilot in aviation history to claim 100 aerial victories - that is, 100 aerial combat encounters resulting in the destruction of the enemy aircraft, and was highly decorated for his achievements. He was instrumental in the development of new fighter tactics which led to the finger-four formation. He died in an air crash in which he was a passenger.

Mölders joined the Luftwaffe in 1934 at the age of 21. In 1938, he volunteered for service in the Condor Legion, which supported General Francisco Franco's Nationalist side in the Spanish Civil War, and shot down 15 aircraft. In World War II, he lost two wingmen in the Battle of France and the Battle of Britain, but shot down 53 enemy aircraft. With his tally standing at 68 victories, Mölders and his unit, the Jagdgeschwader 51 (JG 51), were transferred to the Eastern Front in June 1941 for the opening of Operation Barbarossa. By the end of 22 June 1941, the first day of Barbarossa, he had added another four victories to his tally and a week later, Mölders surpassed Manfred von Richthofen's 1918 record of 80 victories. By mid-July, he had 100.

Prevented from flying further combat missions for propaganda reasons, at the age of 28 Mölders was promoted to Oberst, and appointed Inspector General of Fighters. He was inspecting the Luftwaffe units in the Crimea when he was ordered to Berlin to attend the state funeral of Ernst Udet, the World War I flying ace. On the flight to Berlin, the Heinkel He 111 in which he was travelling as a passenger encountered a heavy thunderstorm during which one of the aircraft's engines failed. While attempting to land, the Heinkel crashed at Breslau, killing Mölders and two others.

The German Wehrmacht of the Third Reich and the Bundeswehr of the Federal Republic of Germany both honoured him by naming two fighter wings, a destroyer and barracks after him. However, in 1998, the German Parliament decided that members of the Condor Legion such as Mölders, should "no longer be honoured". Therefore, in 2005, the German Ministry of Defence decided to remove the name "Mölders" from the fighter wing still bearing his name.

Promotions:
1 October 1931: Fahnenjunker-Gefreiter
1 April 1932: Fahnenjunker-Unteroffizier
1 June 1933: Fähnrich
1 February 1934: Oberfähnrich
1 March 1934: Leutnant (Second Lieutenant)
20 April 1936: Oberleutnant (First Lieutenant), effective as of 1 April 1936
18 October 1938: Hauptmann (Captain), effective as of 1 October 1938
19 July 1940: Major
25 October 1940: Oberstleutnant (Lieutenant Colonel)
20 July 1941: Oberst (Colonel) 

colonel werner mölders oberst german air force luftwaffe 02  colonel werner mölders oberst german air force luftwaffe 03
Bundesarchiv images
     
 

patches


d-186 fgs mölders insignia patch crest badge type 103 lütjens class guided missile destroyer german navy 05  d-186 fgs mölders insignia patch crest badge type 103 lütjens class guided missile destroyer german navy 07 stanavformed nato
   
 
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