Tuesday, 14 April 2015

Another Heroic Driver

We've already seen one heroic driver who racked up 370 engine hours over 2700 kilometers on a T-34, with a breakneck average speed of 7.3 kph. This driver, however, had to work with much more difficult terrain, achieving only 4.3 kph, but he made up for it with some extra heroics and fascist-crushing on top of his mechanical work.

"Award Order
  1. Name: Russkih, Petr Egorovich
  2. Rank: Senior Sergeant
  3. Unit, position: Mechanic-driver of the 1st Tank Battalion, 111st Novgorod-Volyn, Order of the Red Banner, Order of Suvorov Tank Brigade.
    Is nominated for the title of Hero of the Soviet Union
  4. Year of birth 1921
  5. Nationality: Russian
  6. Party affiliation: VKP(b) candidate
  7. Participation in the Civil War and other actions in defense of the USSR (where, when): Western Front from June 22nd, 1941 to June 13th, 1943, 1st Ukrainian Front since April 12th, 1944.
  8. Wounds or concussions in the Patriotic War: heavily wounded on June 13th, 1943, lightly wounded on February 20th, 1943.
  9. In the Red Army since: 1939
  10. Rectuited by: Smutnin recruitment office, Kirov oblast
  11. Previous awards: Order of Glory, 3rd class on August 7th, 1944
Brief and specific description of heorism or awards: Senior Sergeant Russkih walked a difficult road. His fighting machine travelled 1300 km on difficult terrain without breakdowns or emergencies, the engine worked for 305 hours.

In battles for the city of Neunberg, and enemy artillery battery impeded our progress. In this difficult situation, Russkih's tank made it through anti-tank trenches and drove behind the enemy battery, concealed by terrain. He approached suddenly and with great speed, startling the Germans. Only one gun had time to fire and his the turret, but the mighty armour of his tank withstood the blow. The tank burst into the trench where the battery was positioned. Senior Sergeant Russkih heard the scraping of metal on metal as he crushed the guns, turned his T-34 around, and drove into the trench again, running down still living fascists and completely destroying the artillery battery.

In fierce battle for the forests on the approach to the city of Guben, the enemy pulled up Panther and Tiger tanks. The enemy also used AA guns, a battery of which was positioned on the highway and started firing at Russkih's tank. Skilfully maneuvering through the forest, the fearless Russkih crushed the gun crew with his tank tracks and disabled a gun.

When defending against a German counterattack during two-day battles for Guben proper, Senior Sergeant Russkih was concussed, but refused the order to leave the battlefield and asked to remain at his post and destroy the enemy for as long as his heart kept beating.

In subsequent street battles, Russkih's tank was in the thick of enemy infanry. Under heavy fire from the German fascists, his tank was engulfed in flames. Russkih, with no fear of death, pressed on with the last of his strength and rushed forward in his burning tank, crushing the enemy infantry with his tracks. Despite the danger, he opened up the tank's hatches, and drove at high speed to put out the flames. In this uneven battle, Senior Sergeant Russkih destroyed 10 machinegun nests, 3 AT guns, and up to 100 enemy soldiers.

For the bravery and courage demonstrated in battle with German invaders, Senior Sergeant Russkih is worthy of the government award: the title of Hero of the Soviet Union."

CAMD RF 33-793756-41

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