Biplane fighter aces

Belgium

Lieutenant Charles Goffin

Charles Goffin served with the 3/II/2 Aé equipped with Fiat CR.42 at the time of the German invasion of Belgium in May 1940.

In the early morning on 10 May the IIème Group was ordered to evacuated from Nivelles to Landing Field No 22 at Brustem.
At 06:05 five Fiat CR.42s took off from Brustem to provide cover for the airfield. The first patrol (Lieutenant Goffin and Sergent Delannay) tangled with some Bfl09s east of Waremme. Delannay's aircraft was shot down. He baled out and as he descended was mortally wounded by a shot from the ground. Goffin had better luck and damaged a Bf109, which left the fray trailing a long plume of smoke. This plane appears to have been a Bf109E flown by Leutnant Erwin Dutel from 2/JG1, whose aircraft was hit and he was forced to bale out over Aix-la-Chapelle (Aachen). Dutel had been a part of nineteen Bfl09s escorting forty Ju52s in the St Trond/Tongres.
The German fighter pilots report that they encountered five "Gladiators" of which one was shot down.

At 13.20 on 15 May Goffin shot down a second Bf109 near Mechelen.

On 3 June he claimed an enemy bomber damaged near Chartres at 13.40. This claim is not confirmed.

Goffin escaped later to Great Britain and flew in the 7th Photo Reconnaissance Group in the 8th Air Force, USAAF.

He was killed on 8 September 1944 while flying a Spitfire Mk. XI on a mapping reconnaissance mission.

At the time of his death Goffin was credited with two biplane victories.

Claims:
Kill no. Date Number Type Result Plane type Serial no. Locality Unit
  1940              
1 10/05/40 1 Bf109 (a) Destroyed Fiat CR.42   E Waremme 3/II/2 Aé
2 15/05/40 1 Bf109 (b) Destroyed Fiat CR.42   near Mechelen 3/II/2 Aé
  03/06/40 1 enemy bomber (c) Damaged Fiat CR.42   near Chartres 3/II/2 Aé

Biplane victories: 2 destroyed and 1 not confirmed damaged.
TOTAL: 2 destroyed and 1 not confirmed damaged.
(a) Bf109E flown by Leutnant Erwin Dutel from 2/JG1, who baled out over Aachen. Confirmed in OJR No 171-30.07.40.
(b) Confirmed in OJR No 171-30.07.40.
(c) This claim is not confirmed. Probably a Do17.

Sources:
Désastre à Schaffen - Christian-Jacques Ehrengardt, 2000, Aéro Journal No. 12
Eyes of the Eight - Patricia F. Keen kindly provided by Nathan Goldberger
Most information kindly provided by Lars Larsson and Peter Taghon.