AR banner
Back to Top
Nordic Air Forces Losses and Incidents Database
Participants from Norway, Denmark, Sweden and Finland Operating Within RAF Structures

Allied Losses Nordic RAAF Losses RNZAF Losses USAAF Battle of Britain Paradie RCAF Archiwum Polish War Graves Runnymede Kracker Luftwaffe
Check the Databases Menu for the extensive list of our databases which represent decades of original research by our Editors
Search Tips •  Researching Your Loved OneContact us via Helpdesk for research on your loved one  • Names in DatabaseThese are all the names in the database

This is believed to be the most comprehensive database of Nordic activities. If you have more information, please contact us via the Helpdesk.
Data derived from many sources: particular thanks go to the extraordinary site Våre Falne - de Norske Ofrene (Our Fallen - the Norwegian Victims).
Corrections/Additions welcomed via Helpdesk

Norway contributed 4 entire squadrons to the cause, operating under Norwegian officers within the overall structure of the RAF. These were: 330 Sqd (Coastal Command), 331 Sqd (Fighter Command), 332 Sqd (Fighter Command), 333 Sqd (Coastal Command). Additionally, a number of Norwegians fought as members of RAF squadrons.

More than 250 Danish men and women fought with Allied air forces. There were no dedicated Danish squadrons. Many fought within Norwegian squadrons, others were part of RAF squadrons. The definitive account of Danish air activities is in Mikkel Planthin's book 'Britain's Victory, Denmark's Freedom'.

Sweden remained neutral throughout the war but many Swedish individuals could not sit idly by whilst Germany rampaged across Europe and volunteered to fight with the Allies. Some flew within Norwegian squadrons, others as part of RAF squadrons.
(1) Check spelling in 'Names in Database' link
(2) Cannot search on less than 2 characters
(3) Check Serial has no spaces eg NB456
(4) Check date format is YYYY-MM-DD include hyphens
(5) Check you have seen all pages, see bottom of table
(6) Single digit squadron uses form '5 sqd' must include 'sqd'
(7) Read Search Tips: Database section
(8) Scroll to right to see last column
(9) Try using a portion of searchword (Contains option) (10) If no luck, contact us via Helpdesk
The German occupation of Norway began when they invaded the neutral country on 9 May 1940, and the country remained under Wehrmacht rule until 8 May 1945. The government and King Haakon VII had escaped and formed a government in exile in London, whilst their home country was ruled by the ‘puppet’ government of Vidkun Quisling. Many Norwegians fought in the resistance or as part of the Free Norwegian Forces, including the establishment of the Royal Norwegian Air Force in 1944. The fortitude and bravery of the Norwegian people is surely exemplified by the struggles hundreds of intrepid, detemined souls endured to escape and find their way to the Island of Last Hope where they could continue the fight against their homeland's occupiers. We salute the bravery of Norway's finest! Germany's hold on the country was prised from its brutal fist on 8 May 1945 and five days later Crown Prince Olav and five government ministers returned. The rest of the royal family returned on 7 June 1945, five years to the day since the King and Queen had been forced to leave.

A prime source for some of the material in this database is the extraordinary site Våre Falne - de Norske Ofrene (Our Fallen - the Norwegian Victims). This unique memorial effort attempts to capture the story of every Norwegian who died during the German occupation - every man, woman and child. We thank them for permission to use selected extracts from their material.

If you would like our team to research a family member or friend who appears in this database, contact us via the Helpdesk. We will send you instructions.

Owing to a restriction placed by our hosting service, searches cannot be made on less than 4 characters. Searching on 3 or less will produce no results.
We are working on techniques to mitigate this restriction.

Enter Your search conditions and click Search This (to Search for Squadron append 'Sqn' e.g. 602Sqn. In Archiwum use Polish form e.g. 303DM)

These are the results of your search:

You searched for: “"sognnaes"

#Name*First NamesTitleRankRAF Equivalent RankService No.BornNationalityRoleAwardsAir ForceCommandUnitDateofIncident *See NoteAircraftTypeSerialCodeVictories (Fighters)BaseTimeMission                        Incident                        FateCommemoratedPhoto (Click to Expand)Referring Database                        Notes                        Links/Archive Reports
1 Sognnaes (Sognnæs)Helge SigurdsonLtn.N1061920-09-20 BergenNorwayPilotDFC

St. Olav's Medal with Oak Branch
RNoAFFighter Command331Sqn Norwegian

1943-06-22SPITFIRELF.IXAB457FN-D6North Weald7:42Ramrod 99Failed To Return GERMAN A/C, BE-NE-LX ?. / JG1, Crash area near Nieuwendijk, Zuid HollandKilledBergen Solheim

Helge Sognnæs, lieutenant, Bergen. By Sigurd Sognnæs and Anna Marie Jæger b. Terkelsen. Middle school, vocational school. Participated in the battles at Voss 1940, and went to England on 6 June this year. Trained as a pilot in Little Norway, and was a fighter pilot from the summer of 1941. Fell during an air battle over the Netherlands on 22 June 1943. Sognnæs took part in the fighting at Voss in 1940 during the German invasion of Norway, and went to England on June 6 of the same year to enlist in the Norwegian military command there. He was sent to Little Norway in Canada where he received pilot training in the first fighter cohort at the flight school. After a stay at a British training squadron, he joined 331Sqn with military roll number N106, and eventually became a lieutenant.

22 June 1943 would be Helge’s last flight. This day a massive Allied air attack was conducted against targets in Germany, Belgium and The Netherlands. Simultaneously two diversionary attacks were directed against Antwerp and Rotterdam. 42 bombers attacked the Belgian port, while a small group of 12 B-25 bombers attacked targets in the port of Rotterdam. The aim of the supporting attacks was to spread the German fighters to a maximum. More than twenty allied fighter squadrons were in the air to protect the bombers this day. Early in the morning, nine aircraft from 331 Squadron transferred from North Weald to Martlesham east of Ipswich to be ready to meet the bombers in the air over The Channel. Under the leadership of major Rolf Arne Berg they took off again at 7:42. The mission was to protect the bombers attacking the port of Rotterdam. Helge Sognnaes flew in a section headed by Sven Heglund. Heglund would end the war as the squadron’s top ace with 16 downed aircraft. In the German fighter base Woensdrecht in the Netherlands the alarm goes off when the Allied attack on Rotterdam is detected on the radar. Twenty-two FW-190 fighters take off and head in the direction the port. One of the pilots is Oberveldwebel Reinhard Flecks. The Norwegian fighters reject several attacks on the bomber formation, and the attack on Rotterdam was completed as planned. However, on the return flight they meet the German aircraft from Woensdrecht again. The encounter evolves into a real dogfight. Sven Heglund can see the Spitfire with Helge Sognnaes in the cockpit beneath him. He has a FW-190 on his tail. Before Heglund can warn his classmate from pilot school, the aircraft is hit by shells from the German plane. The FW-190 is piloted by Feldwebel Reinhard Flecks of 6./JG 1, flying an Fw 190A from Woensdrecht airfield. Flecks has inflicted a direct hit that blows off the whole tail of the Norwegian Spitfire. The plane hits the ground and aircraft components are spread over a large area.

After the crash, Helge Sognnaes was buried at the Crooswijk cemetery in Rotterdam. In 1946 he was cremated in Rotterdam at the request of his family, after which his ashes were sent to his family in Bergen Norway.

Norwegian 331 Squadron pilots in November 1942. On top: Johannes Greiner, Martin Gran. Second row, l-r: Helge Sognnæs (died 1943), Leif Lundsten (d. 1944), Stein Sem (d. 1942), Knut Bache (d. 1944), Anton C. Hagerup (d. 1943), Rolf Arne Berg (d. 1945), the Squadron's Intelligence Officer Philip Yatman, Rolf Engelsen and Svein Heglund. Bottom: Reidar Haave Olsen (d. 1944), Kristian Nyerrød, Fredrik Fearnley (d. 1944) with Varg, Kaj Birksted from Denmark and Tarald Weisteen.

Results 1 to 1 of 1.