Acepilots online - Hitler’s Generals: Udet TV -
Oberleutnant Ernst Udet was the second-highest scoring German ace of World War One, the leading surviving ace, and the youngest ace, age 22 when the war ended in 1918. He started as a flying Private, was promoted to officer, and flew with Jasta (Jagdstaffel) 15, and later commanded Jastas 37, 11, and 4. He was awarded Germany’s highest military honor, the Ordre pour le Mérite, the Blue Max …
When Hitler re-armed Germany in the Thirties, the Luftwaffe was an important element. Hermann Göring, 22-victory ace and commander of J G Richthofen, was named head of the Luftwaffe. Ernst Udet, now a General, was made head of the Luftwaffe’s Technical Office. After the debacle of the Battle of Britain, Goering made Udet the scapegoat for the Luftwaffe’s failure, and he was forced to commit suicide in 1941. Acepilots online article
Germany’s most famous pilot ... who put a bullet through his head. Hitler’s Generals: Udet, 1996
Udet’s knowledge of engines and planes brought him the dream job of fighter pilot. Flyers were the new idols, the knights of the air. They flew in rickety constructions of canvas and plywood. The air war looked like a game but it was a deadly battle. Hardly any of the fighter pilots survived the war. ibid.
No-one else could pick up a cloth with a wing-tip. ibid.
Udet always drank when he flew. ibid.
Udet played along but had mixed feelings: ‘In the German forest there is a smell of carcasses.’ ibid. notebook entry
The Ministry became his prison. The Ministry expanded quickly and had three thousand employees. ibid.
By now his pact with the devil was sealed. ibid.