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Lt.Col. Heinz Bär ~ Free Shipping

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Print Size 11" x 14" ~ Unlimited Print Edition


Lt.Col. Heinz “Pritzl” Bär

220 victories • JG 1, 3, 51, 77 & JV44


         Heinz (Oskar-Heinrich) "Pritzl" Bär (March 21, 1913 - April 28, 1957 (Braunschweig). Born in Sommerfeld near Leipzig, learned to fly a glider as a teenager. After Hitler and National Socialism seized power, Bär joined the German clandestine flight training program, which would soon provide pilots for the Lufthansa airline and the air force (Luftwaffe).

Bär enlisted in the Luftwaffe and after advanced training was accepted as a pilot noncommissioned officer. When the Second World War began in Europe, Heinz Bär continued in the army as Unteroffizer with the 1. Staffel, I Gruppe of the Jagdgeschwader 51 where the Messerschmitt Bf 109E fighter was flying. The Feldwebel Bär shot down its first enemy aircraft, an American-made French Air Force Curtiss Hawk 75A fighter over Weissenberg, Germany on September 25, 1939.
During the Battle of Britain, he was the Luftwaffe pilot NCO with the most victories. to his credit, he recorded a total of 17 victories during that period.
On July 2, 1941, when he was promoted to Leutnant and was awarded the Ritterkreuz (Knight's Cross), he already had 27 kills to his credit. Bär became the Gruppenkommandeur of IV / JG 51 when the unit was transferred east on July 27, 1941 and assigned to JG 53 “Pik As”, to join the invasion of the Soviet Union. Bär flew the Bf 109F during this period. As Oberleutant, he was awarded the Eichenlaub (Oak Leaves) to his Ritterkreuz with his 56th victory on August 14, 1941.
On November 24, 1941, after the death of the Kommodore Werner Mölders, the JG 51 became the Geschwader “Mölders”. On February 16, 1942, he was awarded the Schwertern (the Swords) to his Knight's Cross for the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves and was promoted to Hauptmann (captain) after his 90th aerial victory.
The Hauptmann Bär was transferred to the Mediterranean front to be the Gruppenkommandeur of the I / JG 77 "Herzas" on May 1, 1942. It flew the Bf 109F and later the model Bf 109G. The constant tension of the combat and the knowledge of the inevitable defeat of the Axis forces in the Mediterranean, caused him a state of tension that had to be relieved of command and returned to Germany for his recovery.
After his recovery, Bär was assigned Reich Defense duties with the II / JG 1 "Oesau" where he flew the heavily armed Focke-Wulf Fw190A fighter against the Allied bombing campaign. He was promoted to the rank of commander and assigned step as Gruppenkommandeur (Group Command) of II / JG 1.
He won his 200th aerial victory on April 22, 1944. In the exit in which he obtained his 200th aerial victory, Major Bär did not His assigned Fw 190 A flew but the now famous Fw190A-7 “13 Rojo” flew. Bär was credited with shooting down 21 heavy bombers in his defense of the Reich at the end of the war.
In June 1944, he was promoted to Oberstleutnant and transferred again to assume the position of Geschwaderkommodore from JG 3 "Udet". In January 1945, it became the Kommandeur de Ergänzungs-Jagdgeschwader 2, an advanced pilot training unit for the Messerschmitt Me262A reactor in Lechfeld, Germany. The III / EJG 2 was soon transformed into an operational fighter unit. Bär shot down 13 enemy bombers and fighters while serving with III / EJG 2.
On April 23, 1945, he joined Generalleutnant Adolf Galland on Jagdverband 44, where he spent the last days of war in Europe. When Galland was wounded, Bär assumed command of the unit on April 26, 1945.
With the JV 44, he flew the Me 262A-1a / U1 prototype heavily armed with six guns including two 20mm MG 151s, two 30mm MK 103s and two 30mm MK 108s. He earned his last three victories against the Republic P-47 Thunderbolts, with the JV 44. Bär ended the war with the rank of Oberst. On May 4, 1945, he gathered the pilots of the JV 44, and ordered them to destroy the Me 262s that were operational, surrendering later to the Americans, being interrogated by agents of the Intelligence Service.

In 1957, the anniversary of his 200 aerial victory, he died when he crashed in a plane in which he was performing aerobatics, with an LF 1Zaunkönig light aircraft.

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