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The Homepage for U-35, a Type VII U-Boat
... 1936 - 1939 ...



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U-35 First Watch Officer Heinz Erchen

Heinz Erchen was born on 10 February 1912, and joined the Kriegsmarine in 1935 (Crew 35).
Heinz Erchen in 1936.
 
U-35 Prize officer Heinz Erchen on board the ALVIS during the first war patrol. Master Albert Thomason is on the left. [32]
 
Heinz Erchen, Karl Schnute, and Werner Lott (right) receiving crosses awarded by the Kriegsmarine. [32,33]
 
On board HMS Kashmir: a british sailor, Heinz Erchen, Gerhard Stamer, and Georg Ludwig Hengen. [60]

He was assigned POW Number 37423.
Prisoners of War being paraded on the streets of Gravenhurst, Ontario, Canada:

Gerhard Stamer is the Naval Officer in the front row on the right, Rolf Dau (commander of U-42) is on the left, and Luftwaffe Major Massenbach is in the center; Heinz Erchen (U-35) and Hans-Joachim Roters are in the second and third rows, respectively. [4]
In the Gravenhurst POW camp, from left: Gerhard Stamer (U-35), Heinz Erchen (U-35), Hermann Beckmann (U-27), Albert Schrader (U-35), Werner Lott (U-35), Johannes Franz (U-27), Schilling (L.I. U-33), Hans Jenisch (U-32), Hans-Joachim Roters (U-35), Johannes Becker (U-33), Anton Thimm (LI, U-32), Fritz Erbshäuser (U-32), [unknown]. [76] The dog on the left was named "Hexe" (witch) and belonged to Hans-Joachim Roters; the dog on the right was named "Flaps" and belonged to Becker. [33]
 
U35U42.jpg (113746 bytes) U-35 and U-42 crewmembers assembled at a POW camp.
Left to right: Gerhard Stamer (U-35), Heinz Erchen (U-35), Hans-Joachim Roters (U-35), Albert Schrader (U-35), Werner Lott (U-35), Rolf Dau (U-42), Siegfried Ludwig (U-42), Julius von Gosen (U-42), Otto Meye (U-42), Max Dünnebier (U-42). [53]
 
GrandeLigne1944.jpg (33662 bytes) U-35 crewmembers assembled at the Grande-Ligne POW camp in Quebec, Canada, 1944.
Back row, left to right: Gerhard Freier, Heinz Erchen, Hans-Joachim Roters, Gerhard Stamer, Paul Fichte
Front row (seated), left to right: Albert Schrader, Siegfried Kienast, Werner Lott, Peter Schwarz, Kurt Grosser. [33]
  
Another photo of POWs at Grande-Ligne; Heinz Erchen is the naval officer, second from left. [61]
 
Another photo of POWs at Grande-Ligne; Heinz Erchen is in the center. [61]

Heinz Erchen was promoted to Kapitänleutnant during captivity.

Heinz Erchen with his wife Adda Erchen at a reunion of the U-35 crew. [54]


Heinz Erchen with his wife, Adda. [61]


Heinz Erchen passed away on 02 November 1985, and his wife Adda passed away on 09 August 2003. They are survived by their two children and families, who have helped assemble information and photos for this website.

His obituary, written by fellow Crew 1935 member Georg Lassen for the Marine-Offizier-Vereinigung (MOV) in its publication "Marineforum" (1986, issue 1/2):
C 35 - Am 2. November 1985 verstarb in Hamburg unser Crewkamerad Heinz Erchen im Alter von 73 Jahren.

Am 10. 2. 1912 in Posen geboren, trat Heinz Erchen am 3. April 1936 in die Kriegsmarine ein. Vorher hatte er die Befähigung zum Seesteuermann auf Gro�Ÿe Fahrt und ein Funkerpatent erworben. Er ist auf der MSM zur Crew gesto�Ÿen, hat mit ihr die gesamte Fähnrichsausbildung durchlaufen und fühlte sich als 35er.

Bereits vor Kriegsbeginn kam Heinz Erchen zur Uboots-Waffe bei der 1. U-Flottille "Weddigen". Am 1. 10. 39 kam er als IWO auf U-35. Nach der Versenkung des Bootes am 29. 11. 39 nordwestlich Bergen, geriet er in Kriegsgefangenschaft, zunächst in England, später in Kanada.

Nach der Entlassung aus der Gefangenschaft trat er in die Handelsvertreterfirma Fritz Nürnberg Maschinenvertrieb GmbH ein. Ein Unternehmen, dessen Inhaber er wurde und das nach seinem Tode in die Hände seines Sohnes übergehen konnte.

Wir trauern mit ihren Angehörigen um diese beiden treuen Crewkameraden und werden ihnen emehrendes Andenken bewahren.


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2016-01-01
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(relative of U-35 Chief Engineer Gerhard Stamer)