Synopsis of Albert J. Baumler's Military Tour in Spain

Image: Albert Baumler Albert J. "Ajax" Baumler recorded his first aerial "kill" with Kosokov’s I-15 Russian squadron on March 16, 1937. In his Chato fighter (CA-023) on a sortie out of Soto Madrid, his patrol happened across a formation of Fiat CR 32s. The following dogfight occurred in the Brihuega-Valdesor-Pajares sector, and Baumler shared a victory with Soviet pilot A. N. Zeitsoff. Four days later, Baumler (CA-022) assailed a group of three Italian SM. 81 bombers escorted by five Fiat pursuits. Baumler destroyed a Fiat 10 kilometers southeast of Brihuega. On April 17 the American was on his second mission of the day, operating from a base near Sarrion, Teruel, when his group intercepted a formation of Heinkel He 51 pursuits. Giving chase to the enemy, Baumler crippled a Heinkel; as he did not see it crash, he was awarded with only a probable victory. The mercenary did, however, obtain credit for a subsequent "kill" in this same contest.

On May 30, Baumler and Frank Tinker were transferred to Polikarpov I-16 monoplanes. While flying his Mosca (CA-069) on June 2, Baumler flamed a Fiat over the San Idelrviso-Segovia area. Operating from Castejon on June 14, he brought down another Fiat over Huesca. Ajax’s final victory occurred on July 8 in a Mosca (CA-022) out of Chozas Madrid. On this final sortie, he was escorting a formation of ten Rasante light bombers to Quejormas, when his group engaged an enemy force of bombers and fighter escorts. In the ensuing melee, Baumler downed a Fiat.

From December 27, 1936 to July 15, 1937, Baumler compiled 174.35 hours in service to the Spanish Republic. During this period, he was awarded three-and-a half Fiats, one Heinkel He51, and the probable destruction of a Fiat and a Heinkel.

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