The heroism of the crew of

History 10/01/20 Feat of the crew of “Katyusha”: how three mortar killed 500 Germans

One of the symbols of victory, along with the tank “T-34” and Il-2 was the “Katyusha”. And although it may seem that heroism in shelling the enemy with long positions a bit, the Soviet mortar, when the need arose, showed miracles of bravery. One striking but little-known episodes of the great Patriotic War was the battle of the calculation of “Katyusha” at the village tanners that took place in June 1944.

Operation Bagration

At the end of June 1944 the Red army launched the biggest offensive of the great Patriotic war Bagration, also known as Belorussian operation. Then, to the memoirs of Georgy Zhukov (book “Memories and reflections”), despite the overall success of the offensive, difficult situation in the area of Vitebsk, where the front had a ledge, so-called “balcony” that allowed the Germans to conduct counterattacks to the flank and rear of the advancing units. The victim of such a front-line position and the crew became one of the “Katyusha”, were surrounded in the night from 25 to 26 June.

the Battle for life and death

In fact, “Katyusha” is a reactive mortar unit mounted on the chassis of the ZIS. Armor, this technique does not have, and to participate in the melee is not intended, at least because of the inability to fire direct fire. It would seem that the only chance for the crew to escape was to leave the car and fight to move to his own or give up. but neither the one nor the other mortar was not going to do.

While the German part was on the way, the calculation opened fire on them, disabling the infantry, light and medium armored vehicles. Even exploding 5-10 meters from the tank missile possessed great destructive force, its fragments pierced the armor and killed the caterpillars. The enemy came in great force, and soon mounted the fire began impossible. But the mortar was ready for this.

As said in his book “Katyusha” Alexander Kozhin, the problem of inability to fire direct fire of Soviet mortar has learned to resolve early in the war. For this front-wheel car just drove into a special trench. This was prepared by our heroes, while the enemy was on the outskirts. The Germans barrage of fire of unseen forces. As a result of loss of the Wehrmacht amounted to more than 500 soldiers and officers, 13 cars and armored vehicles, 4 guns and self-propelled guns.


of Course, likely to survive in an unequal battle Soviet mortar was not simple. Gunner battery, Sergei Borodulin, was wounded, but did not leave his post and continued to fire, resulting in burned alive in the car. Also in the battle killed and other crew members: the captain, Timofei Svetlichny, and the driver, Paul Nazarenko.

All the men of the heroic calculation was posthumously awarded the title Hero of the Soviet Union. Their remains, initially buried in the village of tanners, in 1959, was reburied in city Senno, and at the grave of heroes – a monument.

Jaroslav Gorunov

© Russian Seven

see also: editor’s choice, “Russian Seven”what the KGB agreed with the thieves before the Olympics in Masqueoca snipers at the end of the great Patriotic was not wearing a distinctive snakeface “frost” has entered the list of 100 worst movies historical to understand that the body protein deficiency Recommended article to Share: Comments Comments on the article “Feat of the crew of “Katyusha”: how three mortar killed 500 Germans” Please log in to leave a comment!

Share on Tumblr