Biplane fighter aces


Lieutenant Etienne Dufossez

Etienne Dufossez served with the 5/III/2 Aé equipped with obsolete Fairey Fox VIs at the time of the German invasion of Belgium in May 1940.

In the early morning of 10 May the alert was sounded just before 03:00 at Shaffen-Diest airfield. Stationed on the field were the Hurricanes of Escadrille 2/1/2 (the most modem aircraft in the Belgian Military Air Arm) and the Gloster Gladiator of Escadrille 1/1/2. Also on the field were the Fairey Foxes of Escadrille 5/111/3 and 7/111/3. The Foxes were to take part in live firing exercises at Beverloo.
At 04:20hrs, the Fairey Foxes of 5/111/2 Aé took off and headed towards Landing Field No. 14 (Jeneffe) to reconnoitre German troop movements east of Liege. They were diverted in mid-flight to Landing Field No. 23 at Vissenacken.
The thirteen aircraft landed on the Field No 23 at Vissenacken at 08:35hrs.
Thirty minutes later, nine aircraft left for a fighter sweep around Dienst. Here Bf 109s quickly attacked them and three Belgian aircraft were shot down (0-111 flown by Sous-lieutenant Brel, 0-123 flown by Lieutenant Dufossez and 0-127 flown by Sergent Detal). The other six Foxes were damaged (0-117, 0-132, 0-133, 0-135, 0-139 and 0-179).
Lieutenant Dufossez claimed to have shot down a Bf 109 before being shot down. This was probably a Bf 109E flown by Feldwebel Hoppe of 3/JG 27 who died in the crash.

Dufossez ended the war with one biplane victory.

Kill no. Date Number Type Result Plane type Serial no. Locality Unit
1 10/05/40 1 Bf 109 (a) Destroyed Fairey Fox VI 0-123 near St Trond 5/III/2 Aé

Biplane victories: 1 destroyed.
TOTAL: 1 destroyed.
(a) Probably a Bf 109E flown by Feldwebel Hoppe of 3/JG 27 who died in the crash.

Désastre à Schaffen - Christian-Jacques Ehrengardt, 2000, Aéro Journal No. 12
Additional information kindly provided by Lars Larsson and Peter Taghon