|Werk Nr.||1101 (RLM)|
|Events||Delivered to Seenotstaffel 1 at Biscarosse
June 1944 sunk near Biscarosse, registered as W4+DH.
August 19th 1944 Seenotstaffel 1 Biscarosse was ordered to retreat. The evacuation was done during the night and two Do-24T-3's, W4+BH (Werk Nr. 1007) and W4+DH, flown by Feldwebel H. Reif and Feldwebel Bohlem respectively collided. This was all caused by the ordered radio silence. There were three aircraft due to take-off, the first the W4+BH, flown by Bohlem who, due to lack of waves, had to zig-zag in order to create waves and make it able for the aircraft to take-off. This fact was not reported to the second aircraft, the W4+DH, and Reif calculated the time needed for the first aircraft to take-off and started his own take-off run, eventualy hitting the first aircraft. Both aircraft were badly damaged and towed to the shore in the morning. The aircraft were left there and the crews taken on as passengers on the third aircraft, a Breguet Bizerte, of Seenotstaffel 1. The two Do-24's were later towed on the lake by the Wehrmacht and sunk.
The W4+DH was brought to the surface by French divers on September 20th 1981. For a short period it was on exhibition outside at the 'Musee de l'Hydravion ' near Biscarosse. After this period it was largely scrapped. In an gigantic blunder the authorities and owners of the wreck decided to throw most of it away, unforgivable!!! There are only a few parts left of this aircraft, there are the remains in the Musee de l'Hydravion and the is one bent nut. Heinrich Reif was the pilot of this aircraft and when he heard everything was going to thrown away he asked for something personal from the machine, the steering colomn being his favorite item. No the French said, here you have a bent nut, the rest we'll throw away. Can you believe how they treated this man, unforgivable.
For an article from Air Pictoral's February 1982 issue about the recovery click here.