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Who Killed The Red Baron This is an interesting documentary clip about the Red Baron's last flight. On April 21, 1918, Germany's Manfred von Richthofen (known more familiarly to the world as The Red Baron) was shot down in France while pursuing Canadian aviator Wop May. For years there was considerable debate about who actually fired the fatal shot that killed Richthofen. A Canadian pilot named Roy Brown was given credit for the kill by the Royal Flying Corps. The Australians gave credit to one of their machine gunners on the ground. Modern forensic investigations tend to favor the Australian claim.
Tags: Red  Baron 
Added: 6th December 2007
Views: 2176
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Posted By: Lava1964
Posted by: Guido on 2007-12-06 
Sergeant C. B. Popkin, a Vickers gunner with the 24th Machine Gun Company claimed, 'As it came towards me, I opened fire a second time and observed at once that my fire took effect. The machine swerved, attempted to bank and make for the ground, and immediately crashed. The distance from the spot where the plane crashed and my gun was about 600 yards.'

While Popkin's position seems the best match for the evidence of the Baron's wound, the long range and wide deflection angle required has led some to doubt the plausibility of his claim. Even Popkin himself had doubts; he told the Brisbane Courier in 1964 that 'I am fairly certain it was my fire which caused the Baron to crash but it would be impossible to say definitely that I was responsible...As to pinpointing without doubt the man who fired the fatal shot the controversy will never actually be resolved.'

Posted by: BigBoy Bob on 2007-12-07 
Hey I thought Snoopy downed the Red Baron!
Posted by: Lava1964 on 2007-12-07 
I watched a British documentary on this topic about a year ago. Mathematicians, physicists and historians recreated the events of April 21, 1918. The concluded the fatal shot definitley came from the ground. They also concluded that it was from one of the Australian machine guns. I forget whose claim they figured was most valid. I think it was Popkin's. (Too bad it wasn't Roy Brown. He came from the same small town as my maternal grandmother!)
Posted by: Wikiriwhi on 2008-09-11 
those big tri planes must have looked very intimidating for the times, but must've been easy targets for ground fire.

amazing how fast technology advanced to ww2 when pilots had air to air communication and could advise of tactics.

Interesting to note therefore, Amelia Earhart had radio working when she disappeared.
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