Manfred von Richthofen      (01/05/1892 - 21/04/1918)

Manfred von Richthofen was an aristrocat. He was always called in countries outside 'baron'. But his real title was 'Freiherr' which translate into english as 'baron' and is easier to prononce in the english language, so he became the Red Baron.

One of his passion was hunting in his big estate of his family in Germany, like deer and other game, where he developed this hunting instinct which was one reasons for his 80 victories in his planes like no other pilot of any country in WWI..

Even though he was not a natural pilot to start with, he had to learn to fly his 'machine guns on wings', as he called his triplane.

He chose the red colour for his planes because he wanted to be recognised in the air by his enemies so they are afraid of him. He also wanted to be seen by his comrade pilots so they could see what he was doing, because in those days, they did not have radios to talk to each other in the air.

He was so succesful because he followed certain principals. For example not get involved into an air combat if there is no chance to win it. Not to fight when only on machine gun is working. Only use the machine guns at very close range, otherwise it is a waste of ammunution and not to fight over enemy territory..

He was shot down from the ground by a foot soldier because he did not follow his principle. His cousin Wolfram von Richthofen was flying on that day one of his first combat msssion ands Manfred knew that he was not experienced enough to be safe. Wolfram got somehow lost in his triplane and Manfred followed him into enemy territory to protect him. His guns did not properly. Wolfram escaped back home but Manfred was hit by a bullet from the ground which went into his heart. He could land his plane but died on the ground.