THE SECOND WORLD WAR
Ltn. WERNER VOSS,
(13 April 1897 – 23 September 1917)
Ltn. Werner Voss (13 April 1897 – 23 September 1917)
was a World War I German flying ace credited with 48 aerial victories.
Voss, a dyer's son from Krefeld, was a patriotic young man even while still in school.
He began his military career in November 1914 as a 17yearold Hussar. After turning to aviation,
he proved to be a natural pilot.
After flight school and six months in a bomber unit,
he joined a newly formed fighter squadron, Jagdstaffel 2 on 21 November 1916.
There he befriended Manfred von Richthofen.
By 6 April 1917,
Voss had scored 24 victories and awarded Germany's highest award, the Pour le Mérite.
The medal's mandatory month's leave removed Voss from the battlefield during Bloody April; in his absence,
Richthofen scored 13 victories.
Nevertheless, Richthofen regarded Voss as his only possible rival as top scoring ace of the war.
Soon after Voss returned from leave,
he was at odds with his squadron commander.
He was detailed from his squadron to evaluate new fighter aircraft and became enthusiastic about the Fokker Triplane.
After transferring through three temporary squadron commands in two months,
Voss was given command of Jagdstaffel 10 on 30 July 1917 at Richthofen's request.
By now, his victory total was 34.
His last stand came on 23 September 1917,
just hours after his 48th victory.
After he fell in solo opposition to eight British aces,
he was described by his preeminent foe, James McCudden, as "the bravest German airman".
Werner Voss, during his period with Jasta Boelcke,
flew the Albatros DIII, represented by ACE-43.
Whilst the cowling remained grey,
the nose on Voss’s plane was painted red,
which was common for almost all the planes in Jasta 2.
The plywood fuselage had a red heart ,
edged white, similar to a Valentine's Day chocolate box on each side,
and later a third heart was painted on the top of the fuselage.
Also on each side of the plane ,
a white swastika surrounded by an olive wreath was painted.
This was considered a sign of good luck or fortune,
and was a common symbol which could be found on many planes from almost every nation during WW1.
The figure of ACE-43P is based on a surviving photograph.
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