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The 99th Fighter Squadron, the famous “Redtails” of Tuskegee Airmen fame, was stationed in Ramitelli, Italy in 1944, and flew their famous mission protecting B-17s attacking the Daimler-Benz tank factory at Berlin on 24 March, 1945. The Redtails were credited with destroying three Me 262s of the Luftwaffe '​s all-jet Jagdgeschwader 7 in aerial combat that day, and lost several P-51 Mustangs to enemy fighters. This was the longest mission the Squadron was to fly during the war. Although German Me 163 Komet rocket-powered planes were involved in the attacks against the flight, no definitive reference can be found to substantiate Komet kills by the 99th.

On 2 November 1944 About 12 Me 163 rocket fighters of German Jagdgeschwader 400 fighter wing intercepted a group of US bombers escorted by P-51 fighters east of Leipzig, Germany. The Germans shot down two bombers, while the American fighters shot down four Me 163 rocket fighters; of the the four German pilots shot down, Bollenrath's fighter would be the final Me 163 downing by a P-51 fighter.

In the novel the timeline was stretched to allow a Berlin raid to occur, fictionally, in September 1944.

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