Another fateful patrol was begun by KapitänleutnantRudolf Friedrich in the IXC-type U-759 the day after Uhlig entered. The boat left Lorient on the 7th of June and refueled from U-530 southwest of the Canary Islands in mid-June (Wynn, Vol. 2, p.155). On the 29th of June 1943 Friedrich steered U-750 from a point just northeast of Anegada to a position north of the mouth of the Mona Pass, arriving two days later.
U-759 then turned 180 degrees and backtracked to a point off Anegada and began a passage into the sector again, this time heading northeast from the 1st to the 2nd of July. At that point the submarine turned southwest for the Windward Passage, which it entered on the 4th, only going so far as Point Gravois on Haiti’s southwest tip.
On the 7th of July, while attacking the TAG 70 convoy (Trinidad-Aruba-Guantanamo), the US destroyer Tattnall attacked U-759 but the boat escaped (Blair, Vol. 2, p.362, Uboat.net). Friedrich was successful in sinking the 9,251-ton Dutch motor merchant Poelau Roebiah out of the convoy – 121 of the 123 on board survived. On the same day he struck the American 3,513-ton Maltran, sailing in the GTMO 134 convoy out of Guantanamo. As we shall see, the boat’s success was short-lived.
Clearly looking for prey in the most trafficked channels, Friedrich steamed back out of the Windward Passage to the north coast of Hispaniola, near where the island is dissected by Haiti and the Dominican Republic. On the 8th of July, in a harbinger of what was to come, the boat was attacked by Allied airplanes, starting when a US Navy scout plane initiated a series of attacks on the submarine for a sustained seven hours. Again Friedrich and his crew escaped (Blair, Vol. 2, p.362).
Friedrich again turned on its track and retreated back into the Windward Passage. Proceeding past Point Gravois this time, the submarine was less than 100 miles south of Haiti and between there and the east coast of Jamaica when it was sunk by Allied aircraft on the 15th of July, 1943. A US Mariner aircraft (P 10 out of the VP-32 Squadron, under Lt. R. W. Rawson) dropped depth-charges which sent the boat to the bottom with all 47 hands.
Rudolf Friedrich was 28 years old when killed and has been sailing to and from the Ninth Flotilla based in Brest His career total to that point over two patrols and 80 sea days was two ships of 12,763 tons for which he received no decorations alive or posthumously. The emblem for U-759 was a black eagle descending to attack with talons outstretched. Ironically, the boat was sunk by aircraft descending from the sky.
SOURCES: Gudmundur Helgason, Rainer Kolbicz, www.uboat.net, 2011, Kenneth Wynn, U-boat Operations of the Second World War, Volume 1 and Volume 2, 1997, Clay Blair, Hitler’s U-boat War, The Hunters, 1939-1942, and Hitler’s U-boat War, The Hunted, 1942-1945, 2000