China

CHINA

World War I

                         VICTORIES
NAME            CONFIRMED PROBABLE DAMAGED     UNIT  AIRFORCE  COMMENTS

Tsu, Étienne        3        3        1        N.37  FFC       + 2 forced down

Comments:
  1. Etienne Tsu was a very interesting aviator.

    Apparently born in Kiang-Sou, on December 24, 1885, but, living in France when the Great War began, Etienne Tsu voluntered to join the French Foreign Legion and served in the 1er Regiment. He transferred to the 1er Groupe d'Aviation and, after pilot training, was assigned to Escadrille N.37 and elevated to the rank of sergeant on April 29, 1916.

    The unit was originally equipped with Morane Saulnier aircraft, but, Nieuport aircraft were delivered to N.37 in the Spring of 1916. N.37 was stationed in the VI Armee sector and attached to the Groupement de Chasse de Cachy.
    While serving with N.37 Tsu was given credit for the following:

    • July 10, 1916 - an enemy aircraft destroyed
    • August 20, 1916 - an enemy aircraft damaged (perhaps an Albatros)
    • August 24, 1916 - an enemy aircraft forced to land
    • September 12, 1916 - an enemy aircraft destroyed (perhaps flown by Leutnant der Reserve Ewald von Mellenthin, Jagdstaffel 3)
    • September 25, 1916 - an enemy aircraft forced to land (in the vicinity of Berthincourt at 1350)
    • September 25, 1916 - an enemy balloon probably destroyed
    • September 26, 1916 - an enemy balloon destroyed (north of Nurlu at 1540)
    • November 3, 1916 - an enemy aircraft probably destroyed (in the vicinity of Bois de la Ville at 1550)
    • January 7, 1917 - an enemy aircraft probably destroyed (in the vicinity of Croix Mouligneaux at 0905)

    On March 30 Tsu was assigned to an aircraft repair unit located at Saint-Cyr and and there continued to serve until demobilization on February 20, 1919. In the mean time he had been made an officer, as of October 30, 1916, with the rank of sous-lieutenant having been cited in the orders of the VI Armee on September 5, 1916.

    Tsu was remarkable in several ways: as an Asian who not only flew but served with success in an European air force and as a pursuit pilot who had been born in 1885 and was thus considerably older than comrades and opponents!

    Source: Guttman, Jon: France's Foreign Legion of the Air, Part 22 Etienne Tsu - N.37's Chinese Champion, Windsock International, Volume 9, No. 5., via Need more info about Etienne Tsu, The Aerodrome Forum.

Étienne Tsu
Étienne Tsu

Insignia N.37
The insignia of escadrille N.37


Sources & Literature
  1. Bobek, Jan: Japonci a číňan ve službách Armée se l'Air za veliké války, in Revi, No. 04, 1995.
  2. Guttman, John: France's Foreign Legion of the Air, Part 22 - Etienne Tsu - N.37's Chinese Champion, Windsock International Vol.9, No.5, Sept/Oct 1993.
  3. Gleize, Jean-Paul: Aces, http://jpgleize.perso.neuf.fr/aces/homeaces.htm.
  4. Etienne Tsu, 1885-1940, http://earlyaviators.com/etsu.htm.
  5. Need more info about Etienne Tsu, The Aerodrome Forum, http://www.theaerodrome.com/forum/people/....
  6. Etienne Tsu, Axis History Forum, http://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic.php?f=101&t=139359.
  7. La Famille Tsu, https://pastel.diplomatie.gouv.fr/editorial/archives/dossiers/shanghai/tsu.html.

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