MAJ Richard I. Bong, USAAF WWII

Discussion in 'Military History and Militaria' started by Trip_Wire, Sep 14, 2007.

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  1. Trip_Wire

    Trip_Wire RIP

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  2. An outstanding fighter pilot to be sure, but he truly achieved immortality with his numerous contributions to the development of improvised water pipe technology.
  3. Sorry to be pedantic T-W but shouldn't the title of "Ace of Aces" really sit with Erich Hartmann...? I'm not taking anything away from Bong, as an individual, with his 40 victories but you have to admit his score doesn't compare favourably with the 352 victories achieved by Hartmann.

  4. Trip_Wire

    Trip_Wire RIP

    Did you read the article?


    Nickname Dick Chong
    "Ace of Aces"
    "Bing" Bong
    Place of birth Superior, Wisconsin
    Place of death near Burbank, California
    Allegiance United States of America
    Service/branch USAAF

    I didn't coin the title!
  5. Whilst I don't want to start a p1ssing contest, the term "ace of aces" is a little excessive considering the scores racked up in WW1 by the likes of von Richtofen, Fonck, Guynemer, Mannock, Bishop, Udet et al.

    It also pales in comparison with WW2 Luftwaffe aces such as Hartmann, Barkhorn, Rall, Kittel and the 80 odd other pilots who achieved more than 100 kills during WW2!

    That said, his score does surpass that of Britain's highest scoring ace, AVM "Johnnie" Johnson who had 38 kills. I don't want to take away anything from a man who was obviously an excellent pilot and deserving of plaudits, but the term "ace of aces" strikes me as unnecessary overstatement.
  6. T_W - I did read the article and appreciate you didn't coin the title - that is unless you wrote the wiki entry ;-)

    However you did create a post on Major Bong without clearly identifying its rationale. On that basis you can't knock the comments you get back and clearly the one element that can be reasonably contested is the moniker "Ace of Aces". As Bat_Crab points out there are many more individuals worthy of such a distinction - although I'd still have to go with Hartmann.

    Out of interest what was your reason for posting these details on Bong?

  7. A distant relative of Kevin Phillips Bong, one wonders?.
  8. 'Pat' Pattle was the highest scoring British Commonwealth pilot of WW2; although his exact tally isn't known because (a) he was KIA and (b) the squadron records were dumped in a harbour as we evacuated Greece enough information exists to say that he scored at least 40 and probably nearer 60 victories.

    To be fair, the 'ace of aces' moniker was first employed in an American context, to denote that he's the highest-scoring American pilot of all time.
  9. More on Pattle, who was a South African serving in the RAF:

    The next two top-scoring RAF pilots after Johnson, "Sailor" Malan and "Paddy" Finucane, were South African and Irish respectively, meaning only one of the RAF's four top scorers was a Brit!
  10. A driven individual. I suggest reading "Air War over Yugoslavia, Greece and Crete" by Chris Shores for an in-depth view of the fighting in Greece.

    I always got the feeling however, that Pattle, especially in the last weeks of the Greece debacle, was becoming an increasingly unpopular and resented figure.

    The description of the death of Hornet's 2nd Squadron Leader in Robinson's "A piece of cake" whilst probably co-incidental , does have uncomfortable parallels with the death of Pattle over Athens harbour to my mind.
  11. Trip_Wire

    Trip_Wire RIP

  12. Trip_Wire

    Trip_Wire RIP

    American's Top jet Ace Korean War.:

    Captain McConnell shot down 16 MiG-15s while flying F-86 Sabre jets for the U.S. Air Force. He was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross and the Silver Star for combat heroism. McConnell was the first triple jet fighter ace in history and is still the top-scoring American jet ace.

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