Skip to main content

Last U-boat Captain Dies At 105

            Reinhard Hardegen (second from left) with Adolf Hitler.   

            Reinhard Hardegen (second from left) with Adolf Hitler.   

Reinhard Hardegen, who as a German World War II U-boat captain sank allied ships off the shores of Long Island, New York, and Florida as part of Operation Drumbeat, and who got so close to New York City, New York, that he could see its lights from his submarine’s conning tower, died June 14 in Bremen, Germany at age 105.

Hardegen sank 22 ships during five patrols and ranked number 24 on Germany’s “Aces of the Deep” list, which ranked U-boat commanders by number of ships and total tonnage sunk. His daring exploits won him the Knight’s Cross with Oak Leafs, which he received from Adolf Hitler.

Hardegen got into hot water when he gave Hitler an unsolicited opinion about the German Navy’s needs that were not being met because of resources that were being sent to land forces. Hitler was infuriated and Hardegen received a reprimand from Hitler’s chief of staff, to which Hardegen replied, "The Führer has a right to hear the truth, and I have a duty to speak it."

After the war he was held captive by the British, but he was released and went on to a successful career as a businessman and travelled widely in the United States.

You can read Hardegen’s obituary here.



Elegance At Rest Or Play

Anyone who has been in boating for even a relatively short period of time likely remembers when express boats and sports cruisers were, well… less than attractive. Their high topsides and wedding-cake-style, tiered decks made them anything but sporty and sexy.


USS Indianapolis Found After 72 Years

Researchers have found the wreckage of the World War II-era USS Indianapolis, which was sunk by Japanese torpedoes in 1945.


VIDEO: The Only Way To Cross

Before she was sunk by a German torpedo in 1915, Lusitania was one of the grandest and fastest passenger ships crossing the Atlantic Ocean. This video has more. WATCH.

Screen Shot 2018-06-21 at 10.25.43 AM

Autonomous Boats Coming To Amsterdam

The Dutch city of Amsterdam has teamed up with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, Massachusetts, to develop autonomous boats, called Roboats, to deliver people and goods via its canals. WATCH


Arctic Sailing

Love to sail, don’t mind cold weather or the occasional polar bear, and have an urge to get away from it all? Then the 1910 Dutch schooner Noorderlicht may be just your ticket as she cruises the Arctic waters around Spitsbergen, halfway between the Norwegian mainland and the North Pole. READ MORE


Found: The Resting Place of the ‘Fighting Sullivans’

At the height of World War II, moviegoers paid about 30 cents each for tickets to “The Sullivans,” the story of five brothers from Waterloo, Iowa, who served aboard the USS Juneau in the 1942 Battle of Guadalcanal.


Fabio Buzzi dies in boat crash

He was attempting to break his own endurance record.