Flying an Avia S-199 (Czech-built version of the Me-109) for the Israeli's 101st Fighter Squadron, American volunteer Rudy Augarten was patrolling between Majdal (near Gaza) and Beersheba on 16 October 1948. As he cruised just below 10,000 feet, he spotted a pair of Egyptian Spitfires a few thousand feet below, heading in the opposite direction. A quick wingover and shallow dive put him behind the unsuspecting pilot of the rearmost Spitfire. Closing in, he fired short bursts, scoring hits on the Egyptian fighter. Pouring smoke, the Spitfire went down to crash near a coastal sand dune. Augarten went on to score three more victories in the Arab-Israeli War. Adding the two Me-109's he shot down while flying P-47s with the 376th Fighter Group in World War II, he became one of six Americans to achieve ace status by combining victories from two wars. The print measures 24x30 inches and is signed by the pilot and the artist, Roy Grinnell.
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