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Red Banner 68315: T2V2 Researched "?11" Officer


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He was born 20 October 1921 in Krasny Silin, Rostov region, Russian, of white collar/ex-worker "class background."

After attending school to the 10th grade, he entered the Red Army as an officer candidate ("Kursant") at the 2nd Kiev Artillery School in August 1939. He transferred to the Tiflis Artillery School that December, and graduated there in June 1941 as a Lieutenant.

Assigned as a RIFLES platoon commander in the 280th Artillery Regiment of 146th Rifles Division, he was lightly wounded in the right thigh on 2 July 1941 during fighting in the "western Ukraine," and again lightly wounded in the chest on 12 July 1941 near Voroshilovgrad, requiring hospital care in Mariupol.

Ironically, being wounded twice in 3 weeks was a lucky break for him-- this division would be destroyed defending Kiev.

But Kolesnikov was transferred as a RIFLES platoon commander to the 283rd Rifles Regiment of the 87th Rifles Division in August 1941, falling back on the line Krements, Kiev, Rostov, to the Berestovaya River. There the Wehrmacht overwhelmed his second division of 1941--

Kolesnikov was behind German lines from 1 October 1941 until regaining the Soviet lines 21 November 1941.

He was then reassigned as a platoon commander in the 656th Artillery Regiment of 216th Rifles Division on the Northern Caucasus Front. In July 1942 he became commander of a 76mm infantry close support battery in that regiment, and assistant battalion commander in charge of combat readiness (i.e., field training).

Citation for Order of the Red Banner serial number 68,315:

"Throughout the fighting for his Socialist Homeland, Comrade Kolesnikov has proven himself as a courageous and firm commander.

While fighting against the fascists in the Kuban region, Comrade Kolesnikov's battery destroyed a lot of enemy materiel and manpower. During the fighting near Kislyakovskaya Station from 29 July to 3 August 1942, the battery eliminated up to an enemy infantry battalion which had tried to cross a water obstacle.

While fighting in the foothills of the Northern Caucasus, Comrade Kolesnikov?s battery quickly adopted new operational tactics.

In the area of Abinskaya Station on 17 August 1942, Comrade Kolesnikov's battery suppressed an enemy mortar battery and eliminated up to two advancing companies of Rumanian infantry. In the area of the village of Shapsugskoe on (illegible) August 1942 the battery destroyed five vehicles and up to a company of enemy infantry.

While keeping up with the infantry formation being supported, Senior Lieutenant Kolesnikov accurately spotted for his battery's fire, thus ensuring its particular effectiveness.

On 11 November 1942 in the area of the western slopes of Height 138.7 the enemy went over to the counterattack but, met with the battery's destructive fire, was forced to retreat leaving 60 dead bodies on the battlefield.

On 22 November 1942 in the area of height 194.2 and Pivnichny Farm, the battery stopped the enemy advance by eliminating up to two infantry companies. On 2 December 1942 the battery delivered direct hits on two enemy earthen weapons emplacements (Positions 62000 and 24900) and dispersed up to a company of enemy infantry. Due to Senior Lieutenant Kolesnikov's command, the battery's combat performance was rated as the best within the regiment.

Comrade Kolesnikov deserves to be awarded the Order of the Red Banner.

Signed: Major Yazev, 656th Artillery Regiment (illegible) December 1942

Concurred: Commander of 216th Rifles Division signature illegible 19 January 1943

Final decision of the Military Council: Deserves to be awarded an Order of the Red Banner.

Signed: Commander of the Army, Lieutenant General Leo?.. 28 February 1943.

Award authorized: 56th Army, 13 April 1943"

As a note, this cumulative citation compares directly with what an Order of Alexander Nevsky was bestowed for in 1945.

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He was promoted to Captain 29 June 1943, remaining with the 656yj Artillery until discharged to the reserves 15 August 1946.

After clearing the Cacucasus, the 216th Rifles Division retook the Crimea. After that, I have no idea how they ended up in East Prussia in 1945.

He was wounded again, in the buttocks, on 22 October 1943. This "amusing" wound kept him out of combat action at Hospital Number 5782 in Shakty until April 1944-- some indication of the seriousness of this "funny" "got his *** shot off" injury.

Kolesnikov also received

Order of the Red Star 496,834 on 11 November 1943

Order of the Patriotic War 2nd Class 336,731 on 11 March 1945

and another

Order of the Patriotic War 2nd Class 544,141 on 10 May 1945

(if he was still alive in 1985, that jubilee would have brought him a THIRD OPW2)

Medals for the Defense of the Caucasus. Victory Over Germany, and Capture of Königsberg.

Here is a copy of the poor quality Russian xerox of his photo from his personnel records, wearing THIS Red Banner

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and the section of his personnel records with the HUGE BOLD PRINT on deadly Question 11: has this person ever been a prisoner of war, or out of Soviet control. If so EXPLAIN.

He was very, very lucky-- particularly as the NKVD were mindlessly purging the Caucasus of anyone even imagined as an internal enemy. The 49 days Kolesnikov spent behind enemy lines, when he could :whistle: have been whisked off in Göring's private train for tea and cookies with Goebbels at Berchtesgaden, while undergoing SD training on how to assassinate Comnrade Stalin :unsure::speechless::banger: did NOT get him arrested and sent to the Gulag--

those 49 "out of control" days ONLY destroyed this young pre-war career officer's MILITARY future.

In September 1947, he was a second year student at the Novocherkassy Polytechnic Institute. Issued a reserve officer's photo ID in 1948. And--apparently related to the Victory Jubilee and because of his wartime battalion command, was promoted to Major in the reserves 13 January 1965.

He survived the destruction of two divisions around him, served from occupied Poland to the Caucasus in retreats, evaded the enemy from behind their lines, rejoined his side, and advanced from the Caucasus to Königsberg.

But he would never be "trusted." Those 49 days....

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Award Record Card, showing serial numbers of his awards. This ORB was obtained as a loose item over 10 years ago, and was the first numbered Soviet Order I had researched. Whereabouts of his other WW2 decorations unknown. His life after January 1965... unknown.

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Guest vadim28

Hi!

Can I know, how did you find archives research?

If somebody wants to translate to Russian or On Russian, I can help.

I have some interesting Soviet awards and I 'd like to know who was the owner.

regards, Vadim

sorry for my English! blush.gif

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  • 3 months later...

After clearing the Cacucasus, the 216th Rifles Division retook the Crimea. After that, I have no idea how they ended up in East Prussia in 1945.

...after the liberation of the Crimea in May 1944, shifted north to the 1st Baltic Front in June 1944. During the pursuit after the destruction of the German Army group Center, the 51st Army (they were in the 51st since August 1943) advanced into Lithuania and the southern baltic in the late summer of 1944, and by late October 1944 had been transferred from the 51st Army to the 4th Shock Army in the 1st Baltic Front. At the end of 1944 the 216th RD went to the 2nd Belorussian Front, to the 124th Rifle Corps. It remained in that Corps for the rest of the war, shifting from th 49th Army to the 3rd Army and finally, in April 1945 to the 50th Army in the 3rd Belorussian Front, fighting in East Prussia and Pomerania, near the Baltic Coast of Germany.

(Source: Charles C. Sharp, Soviet OOB WW2)

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  • 4 months later...
  • 3 years later...

(Notice he was wearing the older model covered buttons gimnastyorka in the photo above)

And here he is wearing THE screwback Red Banner, with BOTH ears:

Many thnaks and much appreciation to Team Marcotk-- QUITE an improvement over the 9 month-and-hope days of xeroxes! :jumping::jumping: :cheers:

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