Chronicle of war:

Mikhail Stepanishchev
Mikhail Stepanishchev12. 12. 1917 - 8. 9. 1946

Mikhail Stepanishchev was navigator of the 76th Guards Ground Attack Aviation Regiment (the 1st Guards Assault Air Division, the 8th Air Army, the 4th Ukrainian Front), Guards Captain; deputy commander of the 76th Guards Ground Attack Aviation Regiment (the 1st Guards Assault Air Division, the 1st Air Army, the 3rd Belorussian Front), Major.

He was born on 29th November (12th December) 1917 in Pervoye Kolesovo, now Zadonsk district of Lipetsk region. Russian. In January-June 1930 he worked as a shepherd and plowman on the farm. From 1930 he lived in Donetsk region (the Ukraine). In 1932 he completed 7 school years and Mining and Industrial College in Kadievka (now – Stakhanov, Donetsk region). He worked as an electrical mechanic at the mine, since 1935 – at Voroshilovgrad Locomotive Works (Luhansk). In 1937 he graduated from Voroshilovgrad flying club.

Joined the Army in December 1937. In 1938 he graduated from Voroshilovgrad Air Force Pilot School. He served in the Air Force combat units (in the Far East, then - in the Odessa Military District).

A member of the Great Patriotic War: June-October 1941 – a pilot of the 211th Bomber Aviation Regiment, in May-June 1942 – a pilot of the 211th Attack Aviation Regiment. He fought in the South and South-Western Fronts. Participated in defensive battles in the south of the Ukraine and defense of Donets Basin.

In June 1942, he received a concussion near Barvenkovo (Kharkov region, the Ukraine) and up to December 1942 was at hospital. In January-March 1943 he retrained in the 10th separate educational training aviation regiment of the 8th Air Force.

From March 1943 he was a commander, deputy commander and squadron commander, navigator of the 76th Guards Ground Attack Aviation Regiment. He fought in the South and 4th Ukrainian fronts. He participated in liberation of Rostov region, the Donets Basin, the Left-Bank Ukraine and the Crimea. By April 1944 he made 127 sorties.

By the Decree of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet on October 26, 1944 for his courage and heroism, Guards Major Mikhail Stepanishchev was awarded the honorary title of Hero of the Soviet Union, the Order of Lenin and the Gold Star medal (№ 3715).

In May 1944 he fought on the 3rd Belorussian Front. He participated in liberation of Belarus and the Baltic states in the East Prussian operation, and storming of Koenigsberg. From March 1945 he was deputy commander of the 76th Guards Ground Attack Aviation Regiment. During the war he made 234 sorties on the Su-2 bomber and the Il-2 fighter.

By the Decree of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet on June 29, 1945 for his courage and heroism, Major Mikhail Stepanishchev was awarded the second Gold Star medal (№ 70/II).

After the war he continued his service in the Air Force as a navigator of the 76th Guards Ground Attack Aviation Regiment (in the Belorussian Military District). Committed suicide (shot himself) on September 8, 1946. He was buried in Baranovichi, Brest region (Belarus).

Major (1944). He was awarded the Order of Lenin (1944), four Orders of the Red Banner (1943, 1944, 1945, 1945), the 3rd Class Order of Bogdan Khmelnitsky (1945), the Order of Alexander Nevsky (1943), the 1st Class Order of Patriotic War (1943), and medals.

A bronze bust was installed in Khmelinets, Zadonsk district of Lipetsk region. Streets in Lipetsk and Zadonsk were named after him.
 



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