|Ordered||16 Jan 1940|
|Laid down||3 Sep 1940||Deutsche Werke AG, Kiel (werk 287)|
|Launched||21 Jun 1941|
|Commissioned||18 Sep 1941||Oblt. Max-Martin Teichert|
|Successes||6 ships sunk, total tonnage 31,528 GRT|
1 ship damaged, total tonnage 6,421 GRT
1 warship damaged, total tonnage 11,500 tons
Almost certainly sank in an diving accident on 12 May, 1943 in the North Atlantic, in position 46.39N, 26.54W, while facing the British destroyer HMS Opportune after being badly damaged by a Fido homing torpedo from a British Liberator aircraft (Sqdn 86/B). 49 dead (all hands lost). (FDS/NHB, October 1989).
The loss of U-456
Kptlt. Max Teichert was on the surface when the destroyer HMS Opportune was summoned to the scene by the Liberator aircraft who had just delivered a crippling blow to the U-boat. He decided to take a chance and dive to evade capture but the boat almost certainly sank immediately to the ocean floor, taking the entire crew with it.
Previously recorded fate
U-456 operated with the following Wolfpacks during its career:
Umbau (4 Feb 1942 - 15 Feb 1942)
Umhang (10 Mar 1942 - 16 Mar 1942)
Eiswolf (29 Mar 1942 - 31 Mar 1942)
Robbenschlag (7 Apr 1942 - 14 Apr 1942)
Blutrausch (15 Apr 1942 - 19 Apr 1942)
Strauchritter (29 Apr 1942 - 3 May 1942)
Eisteufel (27 Jun 1942 - 5 Jul 1942)
Boreas (27 Nov 1942 - 30 Nov 1942)
Landsknecht (19 Jan 1943 - 28 Jan 1943)
Drossel (29 Apr 1943 - 12 May 1943)
Attacks on this boat
30 Mar 1942
At 18.13 hours, the boat was surprised by a Soviet aircraft in bad visibility off Kildin Island. U-456 evaded five bombs and escaped undamaged by crash diving. (Sources: Ritschel)
6 May 1943
After attacking convoy SL 128 west of Porto, Portugal, the boat was seriously damaged by depth charges or bombs, but was able to repair the damage and continue the patrol. (Sources: Blair, vol 2, page 296)
2 recorded attacks on this boat.
General notes on this boat
30 Apr 1942. The Sinking of HMS Edinburgh
During the battle of convoy QP-11, two torpedoes from U-456 severely damaged the British cruiser HMS Edinburgh (11,500 tons) on 30 April 1942. She was disabled and under tow to Kola Fjord when she was attacked by three German destroyers, Hermann Schoemann, Z 24 and Z 25, and hit by another torpedo from Z-24. She was then scuttled by a final torpedo from the British destroyer HMS Foresight to prevent possible capture.
The Edinburgh was loaded with Russian bullion as payment for war aid from the British government. The gold was later raised from the wreck.
Men lost from U-boats
Unlike many other U-boats, which during their service lost men due to accidents and various other causes, U-456 did not suffer any casualties (we know of) until the time of her loss.