Rolf Riesen

Oberleutnant zur See (Crew 38)

No ships sunk or damaged.

Born  18 Dec 1919 Cologne
Died  23 Aug 1944(24)Bay of Biscay


1 Oct 1938 Offiziersanwärter
1 Jul 1939 Seekadett
1 Dec 1939 Fähnrich zur See
1 Aug 1940 Oberfähnrich zur See
1 Apr 1941 Leutnant zur See
1 Oct 1943 Oberleutnant zur See


U-boat Commands

U-180 2 Apr 1944 23 Aug 1944  (+)  1 patrol (4 days) 

Rolf Riesen joined the Kriegsmarine in 1938. He served as a Div. Officer and a Watch Officer on the heavy cruiser Lützow from March to Dec 1941. Until March 1942 he served with the destroyer and torpedo boat crew holding division (Busch & Röll, 1999).

He went through U-boat training from April to Sept 1942. In Sept 1942 he went through U-boat familiarization (Baubelehrung) training and then served as a Watch Officer on U-198 until Feb 1944 (Busch & Röll, 1999).

Rolf Riesen on the tower.

From Feb to April 1944 Riesen went through U-boat commander training with the 23rd training flotilla at Danzig. On 2 April 1944 he took command of the large boat U-180 (Busch & Röll, 1999). Unfortunately Riesen and his entire crew of 56 men was lost only 4 days into the first patrol when the boat went missing from 23 Aug 1944 in the Bay of Biscay west of Bordeaux, France (Niestlé, 1998).


Busch, R. and Röll, H-J. (1999). German U-boat commanders of World War II.
Busch, R. and Röll, H-J. (1997). Der U-Bootkrieg 1939-1945 (Band 2).
Niestlé, A. (1998). German U-boat losses during World War II.

Patrol info for Rolf Riesen

 U-boat Departure Arrival  
1. U-180 20 Aug 1944  Bordeaux  23 Aug 1944  Sunk  Patrol 1,4 days

About ranks and decorations
Ranks shown in italics are our database inserts based on the rank dates of his crew comrades. The officers of each crew would normally have progressed through the lower ranks at the same rate.

Media links

German U-boat Commanders of World War II

Busch, Rainer and Röll, Hans-Joachim

Listing of all U-boat commanders

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