Lydia Litvyak: pilot ACE who shot down 16 German planes

Heroes 24/01/20 Lydia Litvyak: pilot ACE who shot down 16 German planes

it took 47 years to the posthumous title of Hero of the Soviet Union rightfully was awarded the participant of the great Patriotic war Lidiya Litvyak. At the same time, a feat accomplished by this young, fragile-looking girl, has surpassed many feats of male heroes.

Conquering the sky

She was born in Moscow on 18 August 1921. 12 years later, this day will be an all-Union aviation day. Coincidence or is it destiny? At 14 years old Moscow schoolgirl blond, Lily, for the first time crossed the coveted threshold of the Kalinin aeroclub, and a year later made his first solo flight.

then she Hardly could have imagined that soon will sit at the helm fighter, on the fuselage which, according to popular memory, will show off a bright white Lily – a sign of her particular battle. But before that happens, her career will be clouded with the aura of mystery, as documentary evidence that sheds light on pre-war biography of Lydia Litvyak, there won’t be enough.

She will ascribe the fate of the daughter of an “enemy of the people” allegedly executed on false charges, thus trying to explain why the choice fell on the girl so far from home the Kherson aviation school of pilots-instructors. Others would say that at the end of the flying school she had to prepare in the home the Kalinin aeroclub 45 pilots. Others will assure that, on the contrary, the experience of the girl is not enough, and she attributed the extra 100 hours of flight to get to the front. However, all this will remain at the level of unsubstantiated gossip, always emerging around virtually every outstanding biography.

the Path of military glory

it is well known that the beginning of the great Patriotic war Lidiya Litvyak was already an experienced pilot, but just on the front couldn’t get over the lack of women’s flight militarytion of parts, which at the time was not yet in any country of the world. In 586-th fighter regiment women’s the brave pilot was enlisted in 1942. Here she mastered the Yak-1 and in August together with his battle group was shot down in the sky above Saratov, his first German bomber. During the year air battles record “White Lily of Stalingrad” (it will be called by call “Lily” on the radio) will join the 16 shot down an enemy aircraft – 12 on their own and 4 in the group.

According to another legend, when the second sortie Lydia Litvyak paired with his companion, Raisa Belyaeva, shot down a Me-109 fighter piloted by the knight German Knight’s cross with three dozen aerial victories under his belt, one being a prisoner and seeing the winner, I couldnít believe my eyes and as a sign of respect he gave her his gold watch. And on February 23 1943, when on account of the pilots had already shot down eight aces, Lydia Litvyak was awarded the first combat award — the order of the red Star.

After Stalingrad, the pilot was transferred to a separate women’s link at the division headquarters, then in the 9th Odessa guards IAP, which took only selected pilots-aces, and at the end of 1942 Lydia Litvyak served in the 296th IAP. By the time a girl has experienced two heavy losses. In may 1942 before her eyes in the air battle died beloved husband, whom they met at the front, only at that time hero of the Soviet Union in the regiment, captain Alexey Solomatin, and in July during a fight with German fighters lost their lives with her best friend, Catherine Budanov.

the Award is searching for a hero

the very same 22-year-old blonde Lily died a year later, on 1 August 1943. In a cruel twist of fate, just at this time the command of her division had considered awarding the pilot the title of Hero of the Soviet Union. However, since Lydia Litvyak was in the list of “missing” and the command was not known exactly, killed it Iland captured, a high prize was never awarded, limiting the order of the Patriotic war, 1 St degree.

in 1971 the young soldiers of the Detachment intelligence military glory under the guidance of apprentice of the 1st schools in the city of Krasny Luch, Valentina Vaschenko, accidentally found the remains of the unknown fighter pilot in the village of Dmitrovka, and the name of Lydia Litvyak in an unmarked grave was engraved only in 1988. After that honestly deserved the title of Hero of the Soviet Union to give Lydia Litvyak posthumously with a clear conscience, and that was done by the country’s leadership may 5, 1990. The name of our heroine is also immortalized the Guinness Book of records – Lydia Litvyak was recognized as the most efficient pilot-fighter in history.

Marianne Markovska

© Russian Seven

see also: editor’s choice, “Russian Seven”thieves in law on the eve of the Olympics-80 struggled with prestupnostiu was the biggest surprise of the Germans in the USSR after the beginning of valupedia Black devil in Khakassia: the most mysterious place in Sibirtrans Saturn in Capricorn: how will it affect RussianAcademy article also Listen to the podcast “the Russian Seven”. Share: Comments Comments on the article “Lydia Litvyak: pilot ACE who shot down 16 German planes” Please log in to leave a comment! br>
Share on Tumblr