Heinrich Bartels´s military career was launched on the Western Front. In August 1941, as a member of Erg./JG 26, Bartels downed two Spitfires over the Channel. Afterwards he served with JG 5 in Northern Europe and managed to shoot down 47 Soviet aircraft. As a member of JG 27, he downed 50 more enemy aircraft. Bartels met his ultimate fate on December 23, 1944. He clashed with American Thunderbolts, and despite managing to bag one of them, he failed to return to his home field. His fate remained unknown till January, 1968, when remains of his Bf 109 G were discovered. The unusued parachute found in the cockpit is exhibited in the Deutsches Technikmuseum Berlin. Photographs of Bartels´s G-6 were taken on November 15, 1943 (or a few days thereafter) when Bartels achieved his 70th victory. Seventy kill marks (Abschussbalken) are painted on the rudder along with the Knight´s Cross. Bartels was awarded this medal a year before, on November 13, 1942. Note the saw-toothed demarcation between the camouflage colors on the wings, typical for part of Erla production planes in 1943.