Manfred Albrecht Freicherr von Richthofen ( German: Manfred Albrecht Freiherr von Richthofen ; May 2, 1892 - April 21, 1918 ) - German fighter pilot, who became the best ace of World War I with 80 enemy aircraft shot down. He is widely known by the nickname Red Baron ( German Der Rote Baron ), which he received after he had the idea to paint the fuselage of his Albatros DV plane, then Fokker Dr.I , in bright red, and due to his belonging to the German Baron nobility Freicherr . Still considered [by whom? ] "Ace of aces"  .
|Manfred Albrecht Freicherr von Richthofen|
|him. Manfred Albrecht Freiherr von Richthofen|
Manfred von Richthofen with the Order of Pour le Mérite (1917)
|Date of Birth|
|Place of Birth||Breslau , Silesia|
|Date of death|
|Place of death||Vaux-sur-Somme , Department of the Somme , Picardy , France|
|Type of army||Imperial air force of Germany , cavalry|
|Part||11th Fighter Squadron|
1st Fighter Regiment
|Battles / wars|
|Awards and prizes|
Manfred Albrecht Baron von Richthofen was born on May 2, 1892 in Breslau , Silesia (now Wroclaw in Poland ) into a noble family. Father - Albrecht Baron von Richthofen; mother - Kunigund baroness von Richthofen, uncle - Ferdinand von Richthofen . Brothers - Lothar von Richthofen , Bolko von Richthofen. Sister - Ilze von Richthofen. Cousin - Wolfram von Richthofen .
Manfred’s ancestor was the famous Prussian Field Marshal Leopold I , Duke of Anhalt-Dessau . When Manfred was 9 years old, the family moved to Schweidnitz (now Swidnica in Poland). In his youth, Manfred was fond of hunting and horseback riding, which predetermined his career choice: after graduating from a cadet school, he joined the 1st Battalion of the West Prussian Lancer Regiment named after Emperor Alexander III ( German: Ulanen-Regiment Kaiser Alexander III. Von Russland ) .
After the outbreak of World War I, Manfred participated in military operations on the Eastern and Western Fronts with the rank of cavalry officer, but soon he got bored, and in May 1915 he requested a transfer to aviation. There he became an observer pilot.
Richthofen decided to become a pilot after a chance meeting with the famous ace Oswald Bölke . Richtofen later wrote in his diary that this meeting became crucial in his life. Richthofen then served with Bölke in the Jasta 2 squadron. He won his first air duel on September 17, 1916 in the Cambrai region. After that, he ordered a friend’s jeweler silver cup engraved with the date of the battle and the type of shot down airplane. When blockages with silver began in besieged Germany, Richthofen had 60 such cups.
On November 23, 1916, Richthofen shot down his eleventh opponent, English ace Lano Hawker, on Airco DH2 , which was then called the "British Bölke." Despite the victory, he decided that his fighter Albatros D.II was not good enough and he needed a plane with better maneuverability, even if it was less fast. Unfortunately, the Albatrosses were the main fighters of the German Air Force for quite some time. Richthofen flew on the D.III and DV models for much of 1917 , until he received the Fokker Dr.I triplane in September. This plane, painted in bright red color, is considered to be its symbol, although there are still doubts whether the baron ever flew on a completely red triplane, or if only certain parts of the plane were painted red.
In January 1917, Manfred von Richthofen shot down the sixteenth opponent and was awarded the highest military award of Prussia - the Order of “ Pour le Mérite ”. In February, he was entrusted with command of the squadron (staffel) of Jasta 11 . Many German aces flew in it, including Ernst Udet . In order to simplify recognition of each other in battle, red was used in the coloring of all aircraft of this unit, and some, including the Richthofen fighter were completely red. Jasta 11 personnel were usually housed in tents, which allowed them to be closer to the front line and provided the mobility necessary to avoid the Allied bombing. Because of this, the squadron was called the " air circus ."
Under the command of Richthofen, the squadron operated very successfully: in the most successful month - April 1917, called by the British pilots “ Bloody April ”, Manfred alone shot down 22 enemy aircraft. On July 6, he was seriously injured and out of action for several weeks. A head wound led to grave consequences - Richthofen suffered from headaches and nausea, his character also changed. It is believed that before the injury he was not peculiar stubbornly to follow one goal, forgetting about others. Later, this quality played a role in his death. After returning to service, Richthofen was entrusted with command of the 1st Fighter Regiment (fighter squadron) ( Jagdgeschwader I ), which consisted of Jasta 4, 6, 10 and 11 squadrons.
According to rumors, by the beginning of 1918, Richthofen had become so legendary that the command was afraid that in case of his death the fighting spirit of the Germans would be dealt a heavy blow. He was offered to resign, but he refused, saying that his duty was to provide air support to soldiers on earth who did not have such a choice. After the death of Richthofen, the command of the "air circus" passed to the successor of his choice - Wilhelm Reinhard , who commanded the unit until his death in a plane crash on July 3, 1918, when a new fighter was flown over. After this, the command passed to Hermann Goering .
On April 21, 1918, Manfred von Richthofen was mortally wounded in a battle over the hills of Morlancour, in the Somme River region , while pursuing a Canadian Lieutenant Wilfred May's Sopwith Camel plane. In turn, the Red Baron was pursued by the commander of the Canadian squadron, Captain Arthur Roy Brown . Also on the red "Fokker" by Richthofen machine gunners fired and the arrows of the Australian infantry division. Richthofen was injured by a .303 British caliber bullet (7.7 × 56 mm R), standard for the British Empire's small arms, which hit the chest from below from behind and went right through. He immediately landed on a hill near the Brae Carby road, north of the village of Vaux-sur-Somme. His Fokker was not damaged during the landing. Some sources reported that Richthofen died a few seconds after the Australian soldiers ran up to him and that before he died he managed to say a few words, of which only the “kaput” was dismantled. However, most researchers believe that by that time he was probably already unconscious or dead.
Statements and Investigations
It is currently believed that Richthofen was killed by an anti-aircraft machine gun, possibly by sergeant Cedric Popkin of the 24th machine gun company  . Popkin was the only machine gunner to shoot at the Red Baron before he landed. Also, many Australian infantrymen fired at Richthofen, and one of them could have made a fatal shot. The Royal Air Force officially announced that the Red Baron was shot down by the pilot Brown, however, with such a wound, Richthofen could not live more than 20 seconds, and Brown did not fire during this period before landing. The fact that the bullet at the exit got stuck in the uniform also more likely indicates that it was a bullet from the ground at the end.
Recent studies of the circumstances of the death of the baron prove that Popkin could not kill him, because, by his own admission, he shot the baron “in the forehead”, and Richtofen, as is known, was wounded in the right side. Therefore, the only person who was able to kill the baron was the volunteer infantryman of the Australian army Evans.
On December 7, 2009, the death certificate of the Red Baron was announced. The evidence was found by the Polish historian Maciej Kowalczyk in the German archive in the city of Ostrow Wielkopolski , located in western Poland. This territory once belonged to Germany, and Manfred von Richthofen was in the area for some time. The death certificate says that the pilot "died from a wound received in battle," but it is noted that the name of von Richthofen is written in a document with a misspelling error. Thus, the death certificate found by the historian does not specify how the “Red Baron" died  .
The 3rd Australian Air Force Squadron, the closest unit of the Entente forces, buried Richthofen with military honors at the cemetery of the village of Bertangl near Amiens on April 22, 1918 . Three years later, by order of the French authorities, he was reburied in a cemetery for German soldiers. On November 20, 1925, the remains of Richthofen were transported to Berlin and again in the presence of thousands of citizens, military officials, members of the government and Hindenburg themselves again buried in a Berlin cemetery. In 1975, the ashes of the Red Baron were again disturbed, and now he rests in the family cemetery in Wiesbaden .
For a long time after the end of World War I, many historians believed that 80 enemy aircraft shot down by Richthofen were an exaggeration of German propaganda. Some authors have stated that opponents who were shot down by his squadron or unit were registered on his account. However, on the crest of a new wave of World War II research in the 1990s, a detailed investigation was conducted. A study led by English historian Norman Franks , published in his 1998 book The Under the Guns of the Red Baron , documented at least 73 of Richthofen's victories, right down to the names of the pilots he had shot down. Together with unconfirmed facts, his personal account can reach 84 victories.
- Badge of a Military Pilot ( Kingdom of Prussia )
- Honorary Cup for a victory in aerial combat
- 2nd Class Iron Cross (September 23, 1914) ( Kingdom of Prussia )
- 1st Class Iron Cross (April 10, 1916)
- Duke Karl-Edward Medal with swords on a ribbon (November 9, 1916) ( Duchy of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha )
- Royal Order of the Hohenzollern House Knight's Cross with Swords (November 11, 1916)
- Order of Pour le Mérite (January 12, 1917) ( Kingdom of Prussia )
- Military Order of St. Henry Knight's Cross (April 16, 1917) ( Kingdom of Saxony )
- 3rd Class Red Eagle Order with crown and swords (April 2, 1918) ( Kingdom of Prussia )
- Order of the Saxe-Ernestine House 1st Class Knight's Cross ( Duchy of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha )
- 4th Class Merit Order with crown and swords ( Kingdom of Bavaria )
- Order of Merit for the Knights Cross ( Kingdom of Württemberg )
- Medal "For Courage" ( Grand Duchy of Hesse )
- Cross “For Faithful Service” ( Principality of Schaumburg-Lippe )
- Cross "For Military Merit" 2nd Class ( Principality of Lippe )
- Military Merit Cross “For Heroic Deed” ( Principality of Lippe )
- 2nd Class Military Merit Cross ( Duchy of Braunschweig )
- Breastplate “For Injury” (1918) black
- Hanseatic cross of Bremen, Hamburg and Lübeck
- Order of the Iron Crown 3rd degree ( Austria-Hungary )
- 3rd Class Military Merit Cross with Military Distinction ( Austria-Hungary )
- Iron Crescent ( Ottoman Empire )
- Liaquate Medal ( Ottoman Empire )
- Imtiyaz Medal ( Ottoman Empire )
- Order of Courage 4th Class (June 12, 1917) ( Kingdom of Bulgaria )
In the movie
- For the first time in the movie, the image of von Richthofen was embodied in 1929 by Georg Burghardt in the film " Richthofen ."
- In the famous Howard Hughes film “The Angels of Hell ” ( 1930 ) the Headquarters of the “Flying Circus” by Von Richthofen is shown, and the main characters are shot down by von Richthofen himself (on a German plane - the inscription: “Rittm. Von Richthofen”).
- Appears in a cameo role in the film Blue Max (1966).
- In the film " Uncle Adolf, nicknamed the Führer " ( 1978 ), "The Red Baron" is mentioned.
- The film " Von Richthofen and Brown " ("Von Richthofen and Brown", Corman Company & MGM, 1971 ). The role of Richthofen was played by actor John Phillip Low (John Phillip Low), and the role of Roy Brown - actor Don Stroud (Don Stroud).
- The ghost of von Richthofen appears in the series True Ghostbusters (1986-1991).
- In the television series Adventures of Young Indiana Jones ( 1992 - 1993 ), Manfred von Richthofen appears in the episode "Attack of the Hawk."
- It is believed that the main character of Hayao Miyazaki 's animated film Porco Rosso ( 1992 ), Marco Pagott, has been written off from the image of Manfred von Richthofen. In addition, Pagott also pilots a plane painted in red. The nickname of the protagonist (Porco Rosso) in an approximate translation means "Red Pig."
- In the series “Ghost Pilot” of the animated series “ Rapid Response Cats ” (1993-1995), Razor and Chance are confronted by the legendary ace Red Lynx on a red motor plane - a direct reference to the Red Baron.
- In the film Revenge of the Red Baron ( 1994 ) appears in the role of a revived toy pilot, throughout the picture pursuing his killer and his family, avenging his death.
- In the 15th series “The Evil of Angels” of the television series “ Cosmos: Far Corners ” (1995-1996), the newest fighter of aliens-chigi appears, which not one of the earth pilots can cope with. Heroes christened the dangerous ace as Chiggy von Richthofen.
- In the 2005 animated film Wallace and Gromit: The Curse of the Werewolf Rabbit , in the scene of Gromit’s "air" battle with dog Victor Quartermein Philippe, the plane of the latter looks like the Red Baron biplane.
- The film "The Red Baron " ( 2008 ). The role of the “Red Baron” was played by the German actor Matthias Schweighöfer ( German: Matthias Schweighöfer ), who suffered from air phobia . Initially, the American actor Val Kilmer was planned for this role.
- In the cartoon Snoopy and the little thing pot-bellied at the movies ( 2015 ), Richtofen's plane is shown as a toy when Snoopy creates his story.
- В 1980 году, компанией Атари был разработан и издан аркадный кабинет под названием («Красный Барон»). Игра использовала монохромную чёрно-белую векторную графику.
- Wings of Honor: battles of the Red Baron - During the game, for the company of the Allies , at the end of each location, the boss is Manfred von Richthofen. At the Verdun location, he pilots Albatros D.III , in Alsace already has his Fokker Dr.I until the end of the game. If you bring him down in Verdun , he will be injured. If you bring him down in Alsace , at first glance it turns out that he was dead, but on the next mission we will be informed that he was wounded and disappeared. In Flanders, he will die completely. In the first battles, he will be accompanied by aces. At the first meeting with him, Kurt Wolf will be in the battle, with the second Werner Foss , with the third, Ernst Udet will contribute to him. All of them will die. Interestingly, his “idol”, Oswald Bölke, favors the Allies, although in reality he was a German ace. When playing for the company " Germans ", it is quite possible that we are playing for the Red Baron. This is indicated by the fact that in the final of each location we occupy the place that the Red Baron should occupy, in the company of allies. And the phrase behind the scenes on the last mission of the game “Your Fokker is ready to take off, Sir!”, And we take off precisely on the Fokker model Dr.I.
- In the game Empire Earth 2001 release in the campaign for Germany, the Red Baron is one of the main characters.
- Also, based on this hero, there are many flash and java games. Basically, these are arcade flying games without a special plot.
- To Battlefield 1 there is an additional pack "Red Baron". This pack, when buying a special edition of the game, adds exclusive content. Namely: the red color for Fokker Dr.1 , the exclusive skin for the Luger pistol , and the emblem of the red baron for the player (the emblem appears on the player’s weapon, the car occupied by him, the player’s identifier, and on the parachute after it is deployed).
In the literature
Fred Saberhagen ’s novel “Berserker is a sworn enemy” (chapter 9 “Squadron from Oblivion”), one of the computer personalities - Manfred von Richthofen - after the victory asks to paint his fighter in red.
Michael Schumacher , a seven-time Formula 1 champion, is also called the “Red Baron” because of the color of the Ferrari cars on which he won most of his victories, and because he is considered the best racer of his generation.
- In honor of Manfred von Richthofen, Hembry launched the guitar - Red Baron Ratrod.  Its color resembles the plane on which the Red Baron flew. Such a guitar is in the collection of the guitarist of the group Aria - Vladimir Holstinin . [eight]
- Album of the project of the Belgian guitarist Dushan Petrossi (Dushan Petrossi) "IRON MASK" / Power Metal / Shadow Of The Red Baron (2010) - Shadow of the Red Baron 11 tracks
- Baron von Richthofen is also mentioned in the song Snoopy vs. Red Baron of The Royal Guardsmen .
- Iron Maiden ’s track “Death or Glory” has a clear reference to Baron von Richthofen. The text refers to a pilot injured in the head flying on a red triplane.
- The instrumental composition of Billy Cobham (Billy Cobham) is called "Red Baron" ("Red Baron") 
- Spanish rock band Barón Rojo
- In 2019, Sabaton released an album of Swedish heavy power metal titled "Great War", which has a track called Red baron
- BNF identifier : Open Data Platform
- Encyclopædia Britannica
- Esprit de Corps Military Magazine. Aces (inaccessible link) . Date of treatment October 1, 2006. Archived on February 5, 2012.
- Miller, M. Geoffrey, Dr. “The Death of Manfred von Richthofen: Who fired the fatal shot?” (Html). Harold B. Lee Library ( September 16, 2001 , 11-06). - First published in Sabretache , Journal and Proceedings of the Military History Society of Australia , Vol. XXXIX, No. 2, June 1998, and © 1998, M. Geoffrey Miller. Date accessed June 21, 2007. Archived February 5, 2012.
- Polish historian found evidence of the death of the Red Baron
- HEMBRY GUITARS made in the usa
- Vladimir Holstinin - Official Site
- shimmy2006. Bill Cobham / George Duke Band - Red Baron (February 18, 2007). Date of treatment November 9, 2016.
- Nikolai Georgievich Bodrikhin. The best aces of the 20th century. - popular science publication. - Moscow: Yauza, EKSMO, 2013 .-- 82-89 p. - ISBN 978-5-699-65639-4 .
- Richthofen, Manfred von Red Baron. Series "Knights of the sky." Translation from English - M.: PBUL Bystrov, 2003 .-- 544 p. - ISBN 5-94700-018-0.