Journal Entry: May 26, 1915

I've almost completed two full weeks with the Jasta and things are going better than I had hoped. While I was in pilot training I would often hear about the air war and I imagined that we would be shooting at each other every time we went aloft. I was pleased to find out that wasn't so, it's seems we have a gentleman's agreement of sorts, the French and British don't bother me and I don't bother them. When we do fly close enough to see each other we salute and fly on. The only fighting that I see on a daily basis is the hell that is the trenches. When I think that I could have been down there instead of where I am serving, I get goose bumps just thinking about it.

We did have a really tragic occurrence the other day, we were flying an artillery shoot and Oberleutnant Hilleke and Oberleutnant Schaub signaled that they were heading back to the aerodrome. We thought nothing about it and carried on with the mission. When we returned we were shocked to learn that they had both died in a freakish accident. It seems that their machine burst into flames as they were attempting to land, no one could possibly help them. I didn't know them very well, but they were both pleasant towards me and I shall miss them.

Member and provider of banjo music for the Illustrious BOC