Flying Squadron 26 Losses

The Winter War

During The Winter War 30.11.1939-13.3.1940 LLv26 lost 16 aircrafts, which 14 in combat. 9 pilots were lost of which 7 were killed in action (+ 1 subordinated pilot from LeLv16) and two in accidents. Seven pilots were injured.

Date Aircraft Rank Name Status Remarks
1.12.1939 BU-74 SSgt T.Uuttu Injured SSgt T.Uuttu was surprised by three 7IAPs I-16 fighters. He managed to damage heavily one I-16 (which was crashed later) and damaged another. His Bristol Bulldog fighter get several hits which jammed his elevators. After a evasive dive he managed to level aircraft just before crashing into woods. SSgt Uuttu was injured, but returned on duty later.
20.1.1940 FR-107 SSgt P.Tilli KIA His Fokker DXXI was shot down by I-16 fighters over the northeast coast of the Lake Ladoga. He shot down a SB -bomber just before when six I-16s attacked him and his wingman, who managed to disengage. SSgt P.Tilli was LLv26's the First Ace with total of 5 1/6 airkills.
12.2.1940 GL-251 2ndLt P.Siirilä Killed Crashed with Gloster Gladiator in a strafing exercise at Kuluntalahti near Kajaani.
13.2.1940 GL-260 Lt C.Kalmberg KIA A Danish volunteer. His Gloster Gladiator was shot down by I-15bis fighters over Värtsilä. He participated an air battle in which involved about 30 enemy planes. Three I-15bis fighter managed to fire him at straight from six o'clock, probably killing him instantly.
13.2.1940 GL-257 Lt J.Ulrich Wounded A Danish volunteer. He participated the same battle than Lt C.Kalmberg. He was wounded seriously and his Gladiator crashed near Kuhilasvaara. Ulrich had 3 bomber kills and one probably airkill.
20.2.1940 GL-280 Lt P.Berg Wounded Lt P.Berg was shot down by 6DBAPs SB-2 gunner over Utti air base. He shot down a bomber and on the next attack his plane caught fire. Lt P.Berg bailed out, but got serious burn injuries. He had 5 airkills on that time. He was later killed in action (KIA 1.11.1941) when he was piloting a Curtiss fighter.(He was an Ace with 9 1/2 victories)
20.2.1940 GL-254 Lt P.Tevä KIA Lt P.Tevä was shot down by a R-5 gunner when he was attacking one over Muolaanjärvi. Probably the gunner get direct hit to pilot, his Gladiator dived straight to the ground from 3000 m altitude.
25.2.1940 GL-258 Cpl M.Sukanen Wounded His Gladiator was shot down by 13OIAEs fighters at Ristseppälä. Cpl M.Sukanen crashlanded after getting bullet hits to his butt and anckle. He managed to reach friendly lines and survived.
27.2.1940 FA-12 2ndLt E.Malmivuo KIA 2ndLt E.Malmivuo was shot down by enemy fighters over Utti airbase. He was going to have a vacation, when enemy planes approached the base. 2ndLt E.Malmivuo requested to go for intercept mission with his Fiat. After a while people heard shooting and sounds of air battle above the low hanging clouds. Later it was reported that a Fiast fighter was found crashed northeast from Utti.
29.2.1940 GL-269 Cpl P.Kosola KIA His Gladiator was shot down by 49IAP's fighters at Ruokolahti air base. Cpl P.Kosola was approaching the base from south-southwest direction when a group of enemy I-16 fighters attacked him from the sun direction. Instantly his plane caught fire and he tried to bail out, but his parachute failed to open due the low altitude (approx 50m).
29.2.1940 GL-268 MSgt O.Lilja Wounded MSgt O.Lilja was shot down by 88OIAP's fighters at Ruokolahti air base. About 12 o´clock 36 enemy fighters attacked base. MSgt O.Lilja's Gladiator was taking off when he was shot down. He bailed successfully but get serious burn injuries.
29.2.1940 GL-262 Lt A.Halme KIA He was shot down by 88OIAP's fighters at Ruokolahti like MSgt O.Lilja. Air battle was ongoing from zero level to 2000 m altitude. Lt A.Halme got a direct hit and died instantly. He was actually a LLv 16´s pilot who was just fetchin a Gladiator fighter to his own squadron when the enemy attacked the base.
29.2.1940 GL-259 Lt C.Kristensen KIA A Danish volunteer who´s Gladiator was shot down by 88OIAP's fighters at Ruokolahti. His aircraft was caught at fire and crashed through the ice. His body and remains of the aircraft was raised from the bottom of the lake later during the Winter War.
29.2.1940 GL-261 Lt P.Christensen Wounded A Danish volunteer. His Gladiator was also shot down by 88OIAP's fighters at Ruokolahti. His plane was caught at fire and he bailed out, but get serious burn injuries.
29.2.1940 GL-263 MSgt J.Tolkki Wounded He was also shot down by 88OIAP's fighters at Ruokolahti. Actually his Gladiator was shot down during take off and he was thrown out of his plane wreck getting serious injuries.
11.3.1940 FA-22 SSgt D.Manzocchi Killed An Italian volunteer. His Fiat was getting back from a intercept mission, when he made a forced landing due to lack of fuel. Maybe he wasn´t aware of the thickness of the snow on the ice when his plane turned over and he was choked to death in the snow. Othervice later was informed that he was actually injured, propably by a gunner of a bomber and the injures was the reason of his death, because the people did not manage to get him out of the plane fast enough.

 


The Continuation War

During the Continuation War 25.6.1941 - 4.9.1944 LLv 26 lost 12 planes of which 5 in combat. 11 pilot were lost of which 4 were killed in action and 7 in accidents.

Date Aircraft Rank Name Status Remarks
23.2.1942 FA-5 Sgt L.Markkanen Killed Sgt L.Markkanen was crashed with his Fiat during a strafing exercises near Villinki at the Finnish Gulf. He injured seriously in the crash and died later on the same day in a military hospital.
11.6.1942 FA-14 2ndLt T.Piiparinen

POW

KIA

A patrol of Fiats led by Lt O.Puhakka took off at 5.25 AM. 2ndLt T.Piiparinen was MSgt O.Paronen´s wingman. Over Soviet Kasimovo airbase Lt O.Puhakka saw a cloud of dust and a low flying enemy plane. He attacked the aircraft, but it managed to hide in clouds. When he get back to the homebase all others but 2ndLt T.Piiparinen was landed. Later in autumn Finnish 15th Division got an Soviet officer POW who told that he had saw a captured Finnish pilot. There was a rumour that the pilot was acting aggressivily and refused to answer to the questions of the interrogator and he has been executed later. Some other information said that he had been seen in POW -hospital in Leningrad in August 1944.
8.7.1942 FA-3 Sgt Y.Korpisalo KIA A patrol led by Lt O.Puhakka took off for an interception mission to the north from Lake Lempaala. They saw twelve enemy fighters which were preparing to land Kasimovo airbase. Lt O.Puhakka attacked from the sun direction one of the slowly flying fighters, but his machine guns didn´t work. The AAA start to shoot against the attacking Fiats. Sgt Y.Korpisalo attacked the same fighter as Lt O.Puhakka, but his missed and flew directly on the front of enemy fighter, which had got its flaps and gears up after Puhakka´s attack, and became shot down. His plane crashed very close the runway of the base.
30.7.1942 HC-455 SSgt P.Aikala Killed SSgt P.Aikala was doing aerobatic manouvers with Hurricane fighter over Malmi airbase. When he was leveling from a steep dive, some big pieces was ripping off the Hurricanes left wing. The aircraft banked strongly to the left and crashed on the airfield almost hitting the administration building. SSgt P.Aikala was known one of the best stunt pilot in Finland at that time.
1.6.1943 FA-17 Sgt T.Kylliäinen Injured Five Fiat fighters were in an interception mission over Lempaala. Between Ohta and Termola they met two MiG fighters. During the air battle Sgt T.Kylliäinen and his aircraft got several hits and the plane caught fire. He bailed out seriously wounded and his parachute landed between the lines. He managed to get back to the friendly lines.
27.7.1943 VI-11

2ndLt

Mech

K.Sartjärvi

A.Melander

Killed

Killed

2ndLt K.Sartjärvi took off from Kilpasilta air base and mechanic A.Melander was a passenger. They were going to get some spare parts for Fiats from Immola air base. Their Viima liaison aircraft was flying far too low for some reason and it collided to a power line. The plane crashed, caught fire and both of the crew died instantly.
19.10.1943 FA-15 Sgt A.Huomo Killed Sgt A.Huomo took off from Suulajärvi for to search and destroy enemy´s observation balloons. Unfortunately he got lost due the dark. Light rockets were shot from Suulajärvi base when they heard the sound of his aircraft. Probably he tried also give a rocket signal from his plane, but the rocket lit his cockpit on fire and he crashed.
17.3.1944 MY-4 Lt J.Marttila Killed Lt J.Marttila was flying frontline test flights with the new Finnish Myrsky fighter when his plane went to uncontrollable flat spin and after that a steep dive. During the dive, pieces of wing upper surfaces ripped off and the right wing broke off about 2 meters from tip. The aircraft crashed into woods near the base and was totally destroyed.
18.5.1944 MT-418 Lt O.Lahti Killed Lt O.Lahti should fly as a wingman in a Me-109G patrol from Utti to Kymi air base. During the takeoff his plane started to rotate strongly to the left and he pulled it on the air at too low speed. Aircraft stalled and crashed into woods upside down and caught fire. Later was noticed that he forgot to lock the tailwheel.
12.6.1944 BW-374 Lt T.Mattila KIA Seven Brewsters were on an interception mission when they met a big formation of IL-2s with escorting Airacobras. Lt T.Mattila was disappeared during the air combat and probably came shot down near area Lempaala-Terijoki. On that area was also very furious AAA, because all the remained Brewsters got lot of hits from the ground fire during the mission.
29.7.1944 BW-364 Maj L.Larjo KIA Four Brewsters were intercepting seventeen Jak-7s and numerous Airacobras and Kittyhawks over Tolvajärvi when Maj L.Larjo got serious hits and his aircraft caught on fire. He bailed out but hit himself to tailplane of his Brewster. The wind pushed his parachute to the friendly side of the frontline. Some eyewitnesses saw that the enemy fighters shooting at his parachute. Maj L.Larjo died later in the same evening, he was that time the squadron commander of the LLv 26.
30.7.1944 BW-368 Lt M.Kukkonen Injured A patrol led by Lt G-E.Bruun were on an interception mission over Tolvajärvi, when they met Jak-7Bs and Airacobras that were escorting the IL-2s. Lt M.Kukkonen got a hit direct to the fuel tank of his aircraft. He bailed out, but got serious burn injuries. He landed near enemy lines and ran to the friendly side. He got better later and participated the Laplands War.

 


The Laplands War

During The Laplands War 29.9.1944 - 27.4.1945 Lentolaivue 26 lost 3 aircraft, which all in combat situation. 2 pilots were lost.

Date Aircraft Rank Name Status Remarks
18.10.1944

BW-357

BW-379

SSgt

Lt

K.Saukkonen

A.Miettinen

KIA

KIA

A three ship Brewster flight led by Lt Teromaa was scouting area Ounasjärvi-Sodankylä-Kittilä-Rovaniemi. Near Marrasjärvi they met heavy AAA fire. Own bombers had damaged a road and caused a traffic jam to the German supply columns. The Brewster flight tried to evade the furious AAA fire, but SSgt K.Saukkonen got direct hit and his burning aircraft crashed into the woods. The wreck of his aircraft and the body of SSgt K.Saukkonen were found at the 28th of October. Lt A.Miettinen dived and tried to strafe the column but his aircraft lit fire due the AAA fire. He tried to bail out, but he was too low and his his parachute didn´t open.
23.10.1944 FK-104

Sgt

Capt

J.Liinamaa

P.Kahla

KIA

KIA

A Fokker CX took off at 6 AM from Kemi airbase for a recon flight. It was seen the last time at 0622 flying to the north. Late autumn in 1945 the wreckage of the aircraft was found near Kittilä. It may have been shot down by the German AAA or it had crashed in bad weather. The crew was died instantly.

Sgt J.Liinamaa and Capt P.Kahla were the last pilot losses in war missions. Actually the crew belonged to Flying Squadron 16 (LLv16), it´s Fokker CX equipped flight was subordinated to Fighter Flying Squadron 26 (HävLLv26) at that time.

24.10.1944 BW-355 Lt R.Sartjärvi Injured Lt R.Sartjärvi and 2ndLt Tihveräinen were scouting area Kittilä-Muonio-Karessuvanto. Near Pallastunturi they saw a column, about 60 German vehicles stopped for refuelling. When the Brewsters started their attack opened 6-7 "Vierlings" fire and Lt R.Sartjärvi´s aircraft got several hits causing a fuel leak. He headed back to base and near Jerisjärvi he became shot again by a Vierling which lit the aircraft on fire. Lt R.Sartjärvi bailed out successfully, but the Germans kept firing at his parachute. He hidded and waited until it became dark and headed to the south. After some adventures he managed to find friendly troops.

 


Summary of losses during 1939-1945

For more information, see also the "Victories" page. Remark: All that kind of losses are counted that resulted an aircraft to remove from the Finnish Air Force inventory during the wars. Many aircrafts which met an accident were repaired and returned to active duty.

Winter War

Loss type/Aircraft Type BU FR GL FA Total
Shot Down/AAA 1 1 11 1 14
Missing In Action - - - - 0
Destroyed on the ground - - - - 0
Accident/Crashed - - 2 1 3
Total 1 1 13 2 17

Continuation War

Loss type/Aircraft Type FA BW Other Total
Shot Down/AAA 3 5 - 8
Missing In Action - - - 0
Destroyed on the ground - 3 - 3
Accident/Crashed 11 - 3 14
Total 14 8 3 25

Other aircraft includes Hurricane and Myrsky -fighters and Viima -liaison aircraft (one of each).

Laplands War

Loss type/Aircraft Type BW Other Total
Shot Down/AAA 4 - 4
Missing In Action - - 0
Destroyed on the ground - - 0
Accident/Crashed - - 2
Total 6 0 6

Summary

Loss type/Aircraft Type BU FR GL FA BW Other Total
Shot Down/AAA 1 1 11 4 9 - 26
Missing In Action - - - - - - 0
Destroyed on the ground - - - - 3 - 3
Accident/Crashed - - 2 12 2 3 19
Total 1 1 13 16 14 3 48