Rene Fonck (right) was the top-scoring Allied ace of World War I. Born in 1894 at Saulcy-sur-Meurthe, France, Fonck had an early interest in aviation but elected to join the combat engineers at the beginning of World War I. In early 1915, he transferred to the air service and saw nearly two years of flying as an observation pilot. Transitioned to fighters in May 1917, Fonck quickly proved to be a lethal force in the sky. A meticulous hunter, he preferred to avoid dogfighting and focused on scoring quick and efficient kills. In July 1918, Fonck passed the leading French scorer, the late Capt. Georges Guynemer, and before the end of the conflict overtook the leading Allied ace, Maj. William Bishop. Downing his last German aircraft on November 1, Fonck finished with 75 kills to become the Allied Ace of Aces.
World War I Aces:
- Manfred von Richthofe - The Red Baron
- Captain Edward "Mick" Mannock
- Captain Eddie Rickenbacker
- Captain Oswald Boelcke
- Lieutenant Werner Voss
Photographs Source: Public Domain