Friends call him “bubi” the Blonde Knight but the Russians refer him as the Black Devil. Unlike most pilot that like multiple kills in a single sorties, Erich Hartmann, WW2 German ace pilot with 352 shot planes, take his time. Legends where told when they saw his plane, allied pilots especially Russians, would bail out than risk being shot at. Actually, he would only shoot the engine with a few rounds in short distances which is very close for comfort.
He wasn’t a natural at first and would fail many times. But later would rise as the highest scoring pilot with last shot plane 352nd, hours before Germany surrendered ending the war in Europe.
Russians hated him and sentenced to hard labor but release with request from the Allies. Returning to flight status with an F86 Sabre fighter plane, probably based from Germany’s advance jet design. And recommended that the US F104 was a dangerous plane to fly and that made him in uncomfortable with his superiors yet his observation was correct.
Here is a quote when ask if he hated the Russian
“Hatred and bigotry destroyed my nation, and millions died [. . .] Never hate, it only eats you alive. Keep an open mind and always look for the good in people. You may be surprised at what you find.”
Hate really destroys everything. Human and the environment.
Hope we find peace in our time.