Plaza Watch International - - Display Case -

Alpina, the much-ad­mired in­de­pen­dent, fam­ily-owned fine watch­mak­ing man­u­fac­ture based in Geneva, has paid fit­ting trib­ute to a re­mark­able group of men. On Novem­ber 18th this year a som­bre yet proud cel­e­bra­tion took place at Mex­ico’s Air Base No.1 in Santa Lucía, Pachuca.

The oc­ca­sion was the 70th An­niver­sary of the Re­turn of the Pi­lots of the Mex­i­can Ex­pe­di­tionary Air Force’s 201st Squadron, known and recog­nised world­wide as “The Aztec Ea­gles” thanks to their par­tic­i­pa­tion in the Se­cond World War. In 1945, the 290 vol­un­teer sol­diers who trav­elled to the Pa­cific War Com­bat Zone were be­tween 20 and 22 years old. They are now aged 90 to 94 years old and de­scribe them­selves as happy to have served their coun­try. The Veter­ans came to­gether to re­ceive a well-de­served trib­ute from the Mex­i­can Air Force and also to com­mem­o­rate their com­pan­ions who died in the per­for­mance of their duty. In recog­ni­tion of their ser­vices, the sur­viv­ing mem­bers of the unit were pre­sented with a 201st Squadron Lim­ited Edi­tion watch made by Alpina, dur­ing a cer­e­mony presided over by Cap­tain Manuel Reyna Garza of the 1st FAAMA Group.

The watch was de­signed to com­mem­o­rate this key date in the his­tory of Mex­ico, and a plaque was cre­ated de­pict­ing an ea­gle hold­ing in its claws the dis­tinc­tive tri­colour tri­an­gle that is the sym­bol of the Mex­i­can Ex­pe­di­tionary Air Force. The watch’s back fea­tures a P-47, the air­craft used dur­ing the fight­ing. At the end of the com­mem­o­ra­tion, a toast was made in the pres­ence of the Veter­ans and their fam­i­lies, all of whom were deeply moved by their mem­o­ries of their fallen com­rades.

The watch it­self was de­signed for pro­fes­sional pi­lots who fly pow­er­ful jet air­craft and need to de­cide in frac­tions of a se­cond the lim­its that their air­craft and the hu­man body can with­stand. The new Star­timer Pi­lot 201st Squadron Lim­ited Edi­tion watch fea­tures three chronograph coun­ters with per­fectly leg­i­ble di­als that are es­sen­tial in­stru­ments for avi­a­tion – a defin­ing char­ac­ter­is­tic of the Alpina Star­timer range, which makes it so pop­u­lar with pi­lots all over the world.

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