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#4499927 - 12/11/19 02:18 PM Highest Scoring Aces Still Living  
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With only 3 Battle of Britain veterans still living other questions came to my mind. I did a bit of research and it appears to me that Bud Anderson with 16 kills is the highest scoring American ace still living.


Any ideas on who are the highest scoring aces of other countries still alive, or even recently passed?


“If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.” - 2 Chronicles 7:14
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#4499935 - 12/11/19 03:44 PM Re: Highest Scoring Aces Still Living [Re: F4UDash4]  
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Germany

None of the famous aces are still alive but Erich Rudorffer was the most recent one to pass away in 2016,

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Erich_Rudorffer


“Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster. And if you gaze long enough into an abyss, the abyss will gaze back into you.”
#4499956 - 12/11/19 05:16 PM Re: Highest Scoring Aces Still Living [Re: PanzerMeyer]  
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Originally Posted by PanzerMeyer
Germany

None of the famous aces are still alive but Erich Rudorffer was the most recent one to pass away in 2016,

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Erich_Rudorffer


I recall his passing. I knew none of the famous German aces were living but it's possible a lesser known ace with as many as 20-50 (or more) victories is still alive.


“If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.” - 2 Chronicles 7:14
#4500000 - 12/12/19 02:28 AM Re: Highest Scoring Aces Still Living [Re: F4UDash4]  
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I spent some time searching today and could not find one living British ace from WWII. frown


“If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.” - 2 Chronicles 7:14
#4500024 - 12/12/19 06:22 AM Re: Highest Scoring Aces Still Living [Re: F4UDash4]  
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Great thread F4U-4,
Also failed :-/ , but the Wikipedia list claiming to cover all WW2 aces is fascinating — the Luftwaffe dominance is hard to believe.

I need to find time to read each and every pilot story, all of them!
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_World_War_II_flying_aces

Cheers,
Slug


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#4500032 - 12/12/19 09:44 AM Re: Highest Scoring Aces Still Living [Re: Sluggish Controls]  
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Originally Posted by Sluggish Controls
G— the Luftwaffe dominance is hard to believe.


It is amazing isn't it? So one wonders why Germany didn't win the war!
The main reason for the dominance of course is that the Allies had a long term view, taking experienced combat pilots and using their acquired skills to train novice pilots and advise aircraft and arms designers and manufacturers, one of the main factors that ensured later air superiority.
Whereas the LW and the other totalitarian regimes made their aces into propaganda stars, who fought on unless killed, captured or incapacitated throughout the conflict. Inferior pilot training a aircraft on the Eastern Front in the early years of the conflict is a great consideration as well.


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#4500040 - 12/12/19 11:20 AM Re: Highest Scoring Aces Still Living [Re: F4UDash4]  
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The majority of the kills of the highest scoring German aces were obtained on the Russian front, and even though there were some very good Russian pilots there were also always a bunch of Russian pilots who had no business being in an airplane. Even at the end of the war the Russians had pilots with little to no flight discipline, formation flying abilities etc. I recall Johnnie Johnson describing them (when he first met Russians in the air near Berlin in 1945) as flying like "swarms of starlings". They were mere fodder for men like Hartmann, Rall etc.


“If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.” - 2 Chronicles 7:14
#4500050 - 12/12/19 01:42 PM Re: Highest Scoring Aces Still Living [Re: F4UDash4]  
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It is absolutely accurate to say that the level of training for Soviet pilots during WW 2 was significantly inferior compared to the training the US and UK pilots got and that indeed did contribute to the high kill stats for many Luftwaffe pilots. It can also be argued that it was almost entirely due to the training because the Soviet hardware was just as good as what the Luftwaffe had (especially after 1942).


“Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster. And if you gaze long enough into an abyss, the abyss will gaze back into you.”
#4500051 - 12/12/19 01:44 PM Re: Highest Scoring Aces Still Living [Re: BD-123]  
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Originally Posted by BD-123


It is amazing isn't it? So one wonders why Germany didn't win the war!
.



Germany was outnumbered about 11:1 in aircraft on the Western Front after the Normandy landings and they were outnumbered about 12:1 in manpower and tanks on the Eastern Front my mid 1944. No amount of Herculean heroics by Luftwaffe aces could counter that.


“Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster. And if you gaze long enough into an abyss, the abyss will gaze back into you.”
#4500059 - 12/12/19 02:42 PM Re: Highest Scoring Aces Still Living [Re: PanzerMeyer]  
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In his book on his time as JG77 Komodore in Sicily , Steinhoff was very clear about the fact that fighting in the air against Russians was much less dangerous than against the Western airforces. About the huge scores on the Eastern front, Wolfgang Spaete in his book on the Me-163 relates that Goering himself did not believe the kill scores of the German Fighter pilots ...he simply did not trust them and considered they were responsible of the failure of the air defence over the Reich till the moment he put a Bomber general at the head of the Fighter arm.


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#4500071 - 12/12/19 04:24 PM Re: Highest Scoring Aces Still Living [Re: kaa]  
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Originally Posted by kaa
..... Goering himself did not believe the kill scores of the German Fighter pilots ...he simply did not trust them and considered they were responsible of the failure of the air defence over the Reich till the moment he put a Bomber general at the head of the Fighter arm.



Galland goes into detail on Gorings almost hatred of the fighter arm in "The First and the Last". Great book, just finished reading it for the second time.


“If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.” - 2 Chronicles 7:14
#4501184 - 12/22/19 12:47 AM Re: Highest Scoring Aces Still Living [Re: F4UDash4]  
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Originally Posted by F4UDash4
I spent some time searching today and could not find one living British ace from WWII. frown


The wikipedia list of aces is not complete it seems.

I was watching "Spitfire: The Plane that Saved the World" on Netflix again and then started looking up the pilots who were featured in that film.

Paul Farnes is alive at 101 years old, he is credited with 8 kills from the Battle of France - Battle of Britain.

Allan Scott is also alive, he has 6 kills. One over the channel in 1941 and the rest over Malta.


“If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.” - 2 Chronicles 7:14
#4503684 - 01/13/20 11:24 PM Re: Highest Scoring Aces Still Living [Re: F4UDash4]  
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Today is Col Andersons 98th birthday!


“If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.” - 2 Chronicles 7:14
#4503798 - 01/14/20 08:37 PM Re: Highest Scoring Aces Still Living [Re: F4UDash4]  
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In addition to all the reasons stated by the other commentators on this thread, I seem to also remember reading that Allied kill verifications were more stringent than the Luftwaffe. For example, multiple witnesses must observe it and aircraft killed on the ground did not count. I don't believe the Luftwaffe had as strict kill reporting which could've led to inflated kill totals.

Plus, it didn't hurt that they took off and flew into a target-rich environment nearly every flight. Most American pilots could fly 50 missions and never see a single German fighter plane, let alone engage one.

Also, Happy Birthday Colonel Anderson! True American Hero.


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