FLY SKY HIGH (REALISTIC FICTION)
This week’s photo prompt is provided by Yinglan. Thank you Yinglan!
By Neel Anil Panicker
Growing up in a large extended family of some 35 odd members including one’s parents and grandparents; uncles and aunts; brothers and sisters, and the ubiquitous eclectic assortment of cousins, full and half, first, second and even third removed, all laughing and playing and generally rioting around one or the other of the uncountable rooms ringed in by a near endless courtyard fully of exotic trees and plants was a one in a life time experience, something little Erich would later recall as an absolutely unworldly, starry experience.
Though there was never a dull moment what with endless games and food and frolic happening all around to keep oneself rivetingly busy, it was during one such extended summer break that ‘Bubi’ as everybody called him stumbled upon what he would later recall as a life changing event.
“Hey, my boy, come here. This is for you”.
While father was known to bring in gifts every time he returned from the war front, this time what landed in Bubi’s hands was a miniature fighter aircraft, a model of the one his father flew.
For the next few days the house became his airport, its courtyards and rooms the hangar as he practiced his take offs and landings on the courtyard that morphed into the tarmac.
A month later around dinner table, Bubi stood up on his high chair and grandly announced, “I’ll become the best fighter pilot in the world”.
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#WWII #German #FFfAW #aircraft
Erich Hartmann is the most successful fighter pilot of all times – with 352 kills. A number that will never be surpassed. His nickname “Bubi” means “little boy” – and it’s easy to find out why he was called like that. He was also called “The black devil”. Hartmann flew a Messerschmitt Bf 109.
Hartmann flew a total of 1404 missions and wasn’t not only never shot down in this huge number of aerial battles, he also never lost a wingman.
He was active as a flight teacher for the West German Luftwaffe after the War. Later on, he became a civilian flight instructor.)