Major Helmut Wick. Kommodore Jagdgeschwader Richthofen Nr. 2.

 
9783613020733: Major Helmut Wick. Kommodore Jagdgeschwader Richthofen Nr. 2.

Major Helmut Paul Emil Wick (5 August 1915 - 28 November 1940) was a German Luftwaffe ace and the fourth recipient of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves (German: Ritterkreuz des Eisernen Kreuzes mit Eichenlaub). The Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross and its higher grade, the Oak Leaves, was awarded by the Third Reich to recognise extreme bravery in battle or successful military leadership. It was Germany's highest military decoration at the time of its presentation to Helmut Wick.[Note 1] Born in Mannheim, Wick joined the Luftwaffe in 1936 and was trained as a fighter pilot. He was assigned to Jagdgeschwader 2 "Richthofen" (JG 2-2nd Fighter Wing), and saw combat in the Battles of France and Britain.[Note 2] Promoted to Major in October 1940, he was given the position of Geschwaderkommodore (wing commander) of JG 2-the youngest in the Luftwaffe to hold this rank and position. He was shot down in the vicinity of the Isle of Wight on 28 November 1940, probably by the British ace John Dundas, and posted as missing in action, presumed dead. By then he had been credited with destroying 56 enemy aircraft in aerial combat, making him the leading German fighter pilot at the time. Flying the Messerschmitt Bf 109, he claimed all of his victories against the Western Allies.

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