Chronicle of war:

Ivan Nikitovich Kozhedub
Ivan Nikitovich Kozhedub8. 6. 1920 - 8. 8. 1991

Ivan Kozhedub – Squadron Commander of the 240th Fighter Regiment (302th Fighter Division, 5th Air Army, the Steppe Front); Deputy Commander of the 176th Guards Fighter Aviation Regiment (302nd Fighter Division, 16th Air Army, the 1st Belorussian Front).

Born on June 8, 1920 in Obrazhievka village of Shostka district of the Sumy region of the Ukraine in a peasant family. Ukrainian. A member of the CPSU (B) / Communist Party in 1943 graduated from the College of Chemical Engineering and Shostka flying club.

In the Red Army since 1940. In 1941 he graduated from Chuguevsky Air Force Pilot School. He served as an instructor in it.

Since the beginning of World War II with flying school was evacuated to Central Asia. After numerous reports with the request to send to the front, his wish was granted. In November 1942, Sgt. Kozhedub arrived in Ivanovo to the 240th Fighter Aviation Regiment of the forming 302nd Fighter Division. In March 1943, the division left for the Voronezh Front.

His first sortie was made on March 26, but was unsuccessful, his La-5 (hull number 75) was damaged in battle, and when returning was still fired by the Soviet anti-aircraft artillery. With great difficulty Kozhedub drove the fighter to the airport and landed. For a month he flew on older machines, until he got a new La-5. Later, he fought on the Steppe Front. Military account Lieutenant Kozhedub opened on July 6 at the Kursk Arc, knocking Ju-87 bomber. The next day, he shot down the second, and on July 9 in the airfight once shot down two Me-109 fighters. In August, he was appointed commander of the squadron.

By the Decree of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of February 4, 1944 for 146 sorties and 20 downed enemy aircraft, a squadron commander of the 240th Fighter Aviation Regiment (5th Air Force, the Steppe Front), Senior Lieutenant, Ivan Kozhedub awarded the title of Hero of the Soviet Union and the Order of Lenin and the Gold Star Medal (№ 1472).

Since May 1944, Ivan Kozhedub fought on La 5FN (hull number 14) built on Stalingrad farmer’s means, V. Konev. A few days later he knocked Ju-87. For 6 consecutive days, he shot down seven more planes. In late June, he donated his La 5FN to K.A. Yevstigneev (later, twice Hero of the Soviet Union), and moved to the training Regiment. But in August he was appointed deputy commander of the 176th Guards Regiment. At this time the regiment was rearmed fighters on the La-7. Kozhedub got to the plane number 27 on which he fought until the end of the war.

The second Gold Star Medal deputy commander of the 176th Guards Fighter Aviation Regiment (302nd Fighter Division, 16th Air Army, 1st Belorussian Front) Guard Captain Kozhedub was awarded by the Decree of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of August 19, 1944 for 256 combat sorties and 48 personally downed enemy aircraft.

Once in the air battle over the enemy territory his La-7 was hit. When the engine stalled, not to surrender, Kozhedub chose the target on the ground and began to swoop down on it. When the target was not so far, suddenly the engine worked again. Then Kozhedub brought the aircraft from the dive and returned safely to the base.

On February 12, 1945 Kozhedub and Lieutenant V.A. Gromakovsky patrolled over the front edge. Finding a group of 13 FW-190, our pilots immediately attacked them and shot down five enemy aircraft. Kozhedub counts three of them, and his partner– two. On February 15, over the Oder Kozhedub shot down a fighter jet Me-262 of a non-commissioned officer K. Lange of I./KG(J)54.

By the end of the war, Major Kozhedub made 330 mission sorties, during 120 air battles brought down 62 enemy planes (not included two American P-51, downed in the spring of 1945 first attacked him.) His last fight, which shot down two FW-190; he held in the skies of Berlin. Throughout the war he had never been shot down. He is considered the best Allied air ace.

Third Gold Star Medal, Guards Major Kozhedub was awarded by the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet on August 18, 1945 for high military skill, bravery and courage.

After the war, a brave fighter pilot continued to serve in the Air Force. Mastered the Jets. In 1949 he graduated from the Red Banner Air Force Academy in 1956 - the General Staff Military Academy. During the Korean War, commanded the 324th Fighter Aviation Division (the 64th Fighter Aviation Corps). But he himself banned from flying. During the year fighting pilots shot down 239 aircraft division of the enemy.

In 1964–1971 years Kozhedub was the first deputy commander of the Moscow Military District Air Force. Since 1971, he served in the headquarters of the Air Force; from 1978 – in the Group of Inspectors General of the Ministry of Defence of the USSR. In 1985 Kozhedub was awarded the highest military rank of Air Marshal. He was a member of the Presidium of the Voluntary Association for Assistance to Army, Air Force and Navy. He was elected deputy of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR of 2-5 convocations, people’s deputy of the USSR. Honorary Citizen of Beltsy, Chuguyev, Kaluga, Kupyansk, Sumy, etc. Author of the books, Serve the Motherland, Loyalty to Homeland.

Died on August 8, 1991 He was buried on August 12 in Novodevichy cemetery in Moscow.

He was awarded two Orders of Lenin (on January 4, 1944; 2/21/78), seven Orders of the Red Banner (7/22/43, 9/30/43, 3/29/45, 6/29/45, 6/02/51, 2/22/68, 6/26/70); the Orders of Alexander Nevsky (№ 37500 of 7/31/45), the Patriotic War of the 1st degree (4/06/85); two Orders of the Red Star (4/06/85, 10/26/55); the Orders “For the Service to Motherland in the Armed Forces of the 2nd (2/22/90), and the 3rd degree (4/30/75); the medals; foreign orders and medals, and the Marshal Star (5/7/85).

A bronze bust to the triple Hero of the Soviet Union, Kozhedub was set in his homeland –Obrazhievka village. In place of the house where the future hero was born, – a memorial sign. On the building of Shostka Chemical Engineering College, where Kozhedub studied and which is named after him, a memorial plaque is installed. In 2001 in Sumy in honor of the 80th anniversary of the Hero, the monument was opened and the park was named after him. On June 8, 2005 in the town of Shostka of the Sumy region in honor of the 85th anniversary of the glorious countryman, Kozhedub museum was opened. His “La 7” (hull number 27) is on display in the Air Force Museum in Monino. In the hero-city of Moscow on the house, where the hero lived from 1966 to 1991, a memorial plaque was also installed.

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