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World War I was in full effect. By May 1915 Manfred Von Richtofen had grown tired of merely working cavalry reconnaissance and longed for air combat. Upon receiving orders to work an even less fulfilling job, on the supply lines, he petitioned for transfer to the Imperial German Army Air Service.
“I have not gone to war in order to collect cheese and eggs, but for another purpose”, he boldly wrote on his transfer application. To his surprise, it worked! Before long, Von Richtofen was a legend, respected even by the enemy.
Being an actual Baron, and having his Fokker DR1 triplane painted signal red, he was soon dubbed The red baron. Credited with 80 air combat victories, the “ace of aces” was finally brought down by a single bullet to the chest, mid- flight. Although he managed to land the plane, he quickly died in the company of British troops.
He was 25
November 3rd, 2018
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