We all know about the Christmas truce story but another sign of respect from both sides occured in the story below:
Max Immelman was a famous german fighter pilot. He received with his friend, Oswald Boelcke the highest military honour of the Pour le Merite from Kaiser Wilhelm in 1916. His name is more known these days for a plane manoevre called the Immelmann Turn (half loop followed by half turn).
For all his fighting instincts in the air, on the ground Max was meant to be an introverted man who did not smoke and very rarely drank alcohol.
When Max died in 1916, the British DROPPED a black wreath with a commiseration note from the British Flying Corps onto Max’s airfield. The note is below:
We have come over to drop this
wreath as a tribute of the respect
the British Flying Corps held for
We consider it an honor to have
been detailed for this special work.
Lt. Immelmann was respected by
all British airmen, one and
all agreeing that he was a
Allister M. Miller – Pilot (South African aviation pioneer)
Howard O. Houp – Observer
The Kaiser banned Oswald Boelcke flying for a month after Max’s death as he felt that his two famous aces could not die so close to each other! My next blog will be about the time Oswald Boelcke had a cup of tea with Captain Watson.