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100th Aniversary for the Ace of Aces

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This coming Saturday , 21st April marks the 100th anniversary of the death of the ace of aces , Manfred Von Richthofen near Vaux-sur-Somme France in 1918 .  


  A brave man, who like millions of brave men on all sides who fought bravely for their country & died in battle


Interestingly it looks more than probable the fatal shot was a single .303 fired from a ground position as Von Richthofen flew too close to the ground over an Australian position while chasing a British plane  


Rittmeister Manfred Freiherr von Richtfofen 

Decorations & Awards: 
• Prussian Pour le Mérite Order: 12 January 1917 (in recognition of his 16th aerial victory). 
• Prussian Red Eagle Order, 3rd Class with Crown and Swords: 6 April 1918 (in recognition of his 70th aerial victory). 
• Prussian Royal Hohenzollern House Order, Knight’s Cross with Swords: 11 November 1916. 
• Prussian Iron Cross, 1st Class (1914) 
• Prussian Iron Cross, 2nd Class (1914): September 1914. 
• Bavarian Military Merit Order, 4th Class with Swords: 29 April 1917.* 
• Saxon Military St. Henry Order, Knight’s Cross: 16 April 1917. 
• Württemberg Military Merit Order, Knight’s Cross: 13 April 1917. 
• Saxe-Ernestine Ducal House Order, Knight 1st Class with Swords (issued by the Duchy of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha): 9 May 1917. 
• Hesse General Honor Decoration, “for Bravery” 
• Lippe War Honor Cross for Heroic Deeds: 13 October 1917. 
• Schaumburg-Lippe Cross for Faithful Service: 10 October 1917. 
• Brunswick War Merit Cross, 2nd Class: 24 September 1917. 
• Saxe-Coburg and Gotha Duke Carl Eduard Medal, 2nd Class with Swords and Date: 30 December 1916 (for action on 9 November 1916). (NOTE: In 1925, von Richthofen’s decorations were placed on display at the family home in Schweidnitz. This decoration had the incorrect date of 11.11.1916 inscribed on the date bar. As noted aviation historian Neal W. O’Connor observed, “Somewhere along the line, apparently, someone bungled the job.”) 
• Hamburg Hanseatic Cross 
• Bremen Hanseatic Cross: 25 September 1917. 
• Lübeck Hanseatic Cross: 22 September 1917. 
• Austrian Order of the Iron Crown, 3rd Class with War Decoration: 8 August 1917. 
• Austrian Military Merit Cross, 3rd Class with War Decoration 
• Bulgarian Bravery Order, 4th Class (1st Grade): June 1917. (While on his way back to the front in June 1917, von Richthofen lunched with Kaiser Wilhelm II at Bad Kreuznach. In a letter home, he wrote: “I have just shot down number fifty-three. In [Bad] Kreuznach, on the way back, I was invited by His Majesty to meet the King of Bulgaria [Ferdinand I], who presented me with his Bravery Order, First Class [sic]. It is worn like the Iron Cross, First Class, and looks very nice.”) 
• Turkish Imtiaz Medal in Silver with Sabers 
• Turkish Liakat Medal in Silver with Sabers 
• Turkish War Medal (“Iron Crescent”): 4 November 1917. 
• German Army Pilot’s Badge 
• German Army Observer’s Badge (NOTE: No record or photographic evidence has been seen to indicate von Richthofen qualified for this badge. However, he successfully completed the training and served for nearly five months as an observer before retraining as a pilot.) 
• Austrian Field Pilot’s Badge (Franz Joseph pattern) 


Bruce Buchanan ( Avid WW1 history buff )


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