Teddy Suhren Ace of Aces
The memoirs of the U-boat service s most unconventional commander Reinhard Teddy Suhren fired more successful torpedo shots than any other man during the war and he was the first junior officer to be awarded the Knight s Cross for his achievements. However, this is not the reason Teddy remains legendary within the U-boat world. Fondly remembered for his good humour and leadership skills, he was also rebellious by nature, and frequently in trouble with higher authority. Despite his refusal to conform to the rigid thought-patterns of National Socialism, his operational successes protected him, and he found himself accepted in the highest circles of power in Germany, staying as a guest at Martin Bormann s house and on one occasion even dancing with Eva Braun. He was also one of the first to publish his reminiscences, his account being typically forthright and unconventional. He died in 1984 but interest in his career was revitalized by the discovery of a cache of photographs documenting one of his operations in U-564, published with great success in 2004 as _U-Boat War Patrol_ by Lawrence Paterson. His collaborator, Frank James, was the man who discovered the significance of the photographs, and interest in the project led to his translation of Suhren s own book.