List of all U-boats




Ordered9 Oct 1939
Laid down4 Sep 1940 Howaldtswerke Hamburg AG, Hamburg (werk 805)
Launched8 Jul 1941
Commissioned17 Sep 1941Kptlt. Ernst Kröning
17 Sep 1941 - 1 Mar 1942  Kptlt. Ernst Kröning
2 patrols
17 Sep 1941-31 Dec 1941  5. Flottille (training)
1 Jan 1942-1 Mar 1942  1. Flottille (active service)
SuccessesNo ships sunk or damaged

Sunk on 1 March 1942 in the North Atlantic south of Cape Race, in position 46.15N, 53.15W, by depth charges from a US Hudson aircraft (VP-82 USN/P-8). 45 dead (all hands lost).

Loss position

View the 2 war patrols

Wolfpack operations

U-656 operated with the following Wolfpacks during its career:
   Schlei (17 Jan 1942 - 24 Jan 1942)

Attacks on this boat and other events

1 Mar 1942
The sinking of U-656 The boat was bombed and sunk by a PBO-1 Hudson (VP-82 USN, pilot Ens William Tepuni, USNR) on an anti-submarine sweep from Argentia, south of Cape Race, Newfoundland. The PBO-1 Hudsons were 20 Hudson Mk.IIIAs diverted from Lend-Lease to equip USN Sqdn VP-82, which sank the first two U-boats by US forces; U-656 on 1 March and U-503 on 15 March 1942.

1 recorded attack on this boat.

Men lost from U-boats

Unlike many other U-boats, which during their service lost men due to accidents and various other causes, U-656 did not suffer any casualties (we know of) until the time of her loss.

Media links

German U-Boat Losses During World War II

Niestle, Axel

U-Boat Operations of the Second World War - Vol 2

Wynn, Kenneth

Hitler's U-boat War

Blair, Clay

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