Manfred von Richtofen.
Red Baron, Ace of Aces.
In 1914, Yugoslav Nationalist had killed Austrian Archduke and heir Franz Ferdinand. Then Austria declared war on Serbia and WW1. Of course, it was an excuse. Are the states stupid enough to declare a WW1, because of assassination of one person who is even not emperor? The clash of interest happened as always but it caused one of the bloodiest wars in the Earth. WW1 was one of the first wars in which also air forces played significant role. In this war, lots of talented pilots evolved and demonstrated their skills, abilities in the sky. Furthermore, whoever won 5 air victories and recognized officially, I mean shot down enemy aircrafts received ace title.
I am going to talk not about one of the aces of this war, but ace of aces and one of most prominent pilots Manfred von Richtofen, nicknamed Red Baron. He was born in 1892 in today’s Wroclaw, Poland. He began to military trainings when he was 11. In 1911, he joined to Uhlan Cavalry. After the beginning of the war, in 1915, he entered to the training for being a pilot. He joined to Kampgeschwader in March of 1916. Then, the terrible nightmares of Antanta unit began. He was officially credited to 80 aces. We should not forget that at that time, planes were newy created and they were not on the same level with today’s planes. Manfred’s plane was also iconic, his plane’s color was red. The model of his plane was Fokker Triplane. After, gaining 16th air victory, he was awarded with Order Pour Le Merite which was the highest military award at that time. He also received lots of other medals. His brother Lothar von Richtofen was also an ace pilot and he had 40 air victories.
Red Baron with his Triplane.
Lothar von Richtofen
In 1917, he was seerely wounded by Donald Cunnell, but Richtofen was able to to execute his plane to friendly ground. After recovery, he again returned back to the army. However, in 1918, he was not lucky this time. In April 18, he began to pursue a novice pilot Wop May. At this time, Richtofen’s school friend Canadian Captain Arthur “Roy” Brown shot fatally Red Baron. Again he was able to land his plane roughly, however, he died because of this fatal wound. There is debate about who killed Red Baron, but RFA approved that Arthur Brown is the murderer of Red Baron.
Arthur Roy Brown
Most of the pilots died when they were only in their 20s. And Richtofen also was one of these tragedic pilots. It is however another cruel rule of the war.Lots of young people had died and had been killed by the people whom they never knew. And these wars happened due to “Clash” of personal interests. It was my first article regarding my new People of Warriors category. I am going also write about some other famous fighters such as Paul Hertmann, Lidiya Litvak, Hazi Aslanov, etc.