Messerschmitt Bf 109G Ace: Erich Hartmann
Erich Alfred Hartmann (19 April 1922 – 20 September 1993) was the most successful fighter ace in the history of aerial warfare. He was credited with 352 Allied aircraft downed - of which 350 were Soviet and 2 American over the course of WW2. This was despite 16 separate instances of being forced to crash land his fighter - either due to mechanical failure or to damage incurred from the debris of enemy aircraft he himself had shot down.
Prior to the War he was a glider pilot, but joined the Luftwaffe in 1940 and had completed his training by 1942. Posted to Jagdgeschwader 52, a veteran wing on the Eastern front, he benefitted from the supervision of some of the Luftwaffe's most experienced pilots, flying the Messerschmitt BF109G.
As his reputation developed he gained the nickname Cherniy Chort ("Black Devil"), both because of his skill and his aircraft's paint scheme. Hartmann was greatly decorated for his achievements, ultimately receiving the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves, Swords and Diamonds on 25th August 1944 having achieved 301 aerial victories. This was, at the time, Germany's highest military decoration.
Hartmann's final victory came at midday on 8 May 1945, hours before the German surrender. Turned over to the Red Army, he was tried on war crimes and sentenced to 20 years of imprisonment. He was released in 1955 and posthumously released of all charges (in 1997).
Contains 1 Warlord Resin aircraft with advantage base & cards.