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OPW II to Guards Major Savelyev


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Today the research arrived for my Order of the Patriotic War 2nd Class nr. 44030, awarded to Guards Major Fedor Alekseyevich Savelyev.

Fedor Alekseyevich Savelyev was born om 17 Feb 1905 and he lived in the village of Russky Kochim, Sosnovy Bor Region, Penza Oblast. In 1927 he joined the Red Army and in 1930 he became a member of the Communist Party. He was a participant of the GPW since 1942.

In 1943 Guards Major Savelyev was the chief of a combat reconnaissance RO?? (don't know what that is) of Rotmistrov's 5th Guards Tank Army. "Comrade Savelyev was working as the section head of combat reconnaissance and personally lead and organised the reconnaissance in the period between 15 Oct and 3 Nov 1943." One night he captured documents of the SS-Panzergrenadier-Division "Totenkopf". He was nominated for a Red Banner but received an OPW II.

With the citation was a picture of Savelyev (grumpy fellow):

saveljev.jpgsaveljev_opo2.jpg

Lieutenant-Colonel Savelyev and his OPW II

Savelyev's ranks:

Senior Lieutenant: 20 Nov 1938

Captain: 1940

Major: 4 Nov 1942

Lieutenant-Colonel: 21 Feb 1944

Colonel: 23 Aug 1951

Savelyev's awards:

Order of the Red Star: 28 Jul 1943

Order of the Patriotic War 2nd Class: 17 Nov 1943

Order of the Red Banner: 23 Feb 1944

Order of the Red Star: 3 Nov 1944

Medal for the Victory over Germany: 9 May 1945

Order of the Red Banner: 15 Nov 1950

Order of Lenin: 5 Nov 1954

Medal for 30 Years Soviet Army and Fleet

Edited by Ferdinand
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Dear Auke,

very interesting documents and a beautyful OPW 2cl :cheers: .

He should have received also Military Merit Medal for 10 years in service :unsure: ?

I assume, that one RS, the RB + the Lenin are for long service: 15, 20 & 25 years :unsure: ?

The citiation about the documents of the SS-Panzergrenadierdivision "Totenkopf" is highly interesting :jumping: . Is it possible to get more detailed informations out of your documents :unsure: ?

A friend of mine, SS-Rottenf?hrer Ing. Richard Zimmermann (he died as an old man last year), served in the "Totenkopf"-unit (one of the Sturmgesch?tz-Abteilungen) from the very beginning, from the mid 1930s, till to the very end, Vienna, april 1945, constantly. Years ago he published his memoirs and gave a very comprehensive history of the "Totenkopf"-unit to me. I will be back to my library in Vienna end of next week and maybe I might find something from the German side about these days, when comrade Savelyev captured the documents.

Best regards :beer:

Christian

Edited by Christian Zulus
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He should have received also Military Merit Medal for 10 years in service :unsure: ?

I assume, that one RS, the RB + the Lenin are for long service: 15, 20 & 25 years :unsure: ?

The citiation about the documents of the SS-Panzergrenadierdivision "Totenkopf" is highly interesting :jumping: . Is it possible to get more detailed informations out of your documents :unsure: ?

Savelyev joined the Red Army in 1927, so when he served 10 years there were no Military Merit Medal's yet (and MMM's, Red Stars, Red Banner's and Lenin's were only issued as long service awards as of 1944). But his Red Banner was most probably for 20 years of service (23 years actually) and the Lenin for 25 years of service (27 years). EDIT: Savelyev's third Red Star was probably for 15 years of long service (17 years actually), as it was awarded per Ukaz of 3 Nov 1944, which also included a load of long service awardings (see Dave's post in the following thread: http://gmic.co.uk/index.php?showtopic=7861)

Furthermore my Russian isn't very good, so maybe someone else can provide some details. Here is some additional info I could translate after spending hours with the docs and my dictionary:

Comrade Savelyev was working as a combat reconnaissance section head in the 15th Tank Corps of the Western Front, and from June 1943 in the 5th Guards Tank Army of the 2nd Ukrainian Front. I'm having some trouble reading his other assignments. He personally lead and organised the reconnaissance in the period between 15 Oct and 3 Nov 1943, during which he fulfilled several patrols and managed to capture enemy documents. At one night he captured documents of the Tank Division "Mertvaya Golova", which is the SS-Panzergrenadier-Division "Totenkopf" (Russian love to translate).

The citation was written and signed by the acting chief of staff of the reconnaissance section (or something like that), Guards Colonel Grechanikov, and on 8 Nov 1943 signed by the chief of staff of the 5th Guards Tank Army, Guards Major-General of Tank Troops Baskakov.

Some personal info from the last doc: Savelyev's occupation before the joined the Red Army was farmer. His mother was Nadezhda Leontyevna Savelyeva and he was married to Anna Stepanovna Savelyeva. He spoke no foreign languages. He made one travel to a foreign country (a trip to Romania in Dec 1946). Savelyev was wounded twice in the war, in Aug 1942 and Feb 1944. He attended two military courses: one at the Orlovsk Armor School and a commander's course at the Stalin Military Academy.

Auke

Edited by Ferdinand
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"R.O." = Reconnaissance Unit. Typical Stalinist repetitiveness-- he was "chief of combat reconnaissance of the Reconnaissance Unit of the 5th Army."

He seems to have been retired on reaching the age limit in rank-- full colonel and 50 years old. The retirement lines always quote Paragraph Somethingorother... but I have never seen any explanation for what the various paragraph numbers MEAN.

here are some random facts as I see them in looking over his records--

Graduated from the Tank Academy "in the name of Stalin" in 1942. So he'd have received that "white diamond" badge in the 1950s.

Two severe wounds-- August 1942 and February 1944: see hospital stays under units for when he was wounded.

No punishments.

Hospital 4842 23.8.42

Deputy CO of Reconnaissance 15th Tank Corps 2.3.43

Deputy CO of Recon 5th Tank Army 20.6.43

Hospital 4551 2.2.44

Student back at Stalin Academy 10.10.44 (probably on light duties recovering from wounds)

Commander of students at Buiskoe Tank School 24.11.45

Battalion Commander of 89th Armored Car Regiment 8.12.46

Commander of 69th Independent Instructional Tank Battalion of the 25th Mechanized Division 11.4.47

Deputy CO 5th Gds Mechanized Rgt of 2nd Gds Mech Div 5.1.48

Deputy CO of 134th Gds Tank Rgt of 35th Gds Mech Div 18.9.48

I can't read these lines as too light and small, but 19.1.49 something about Deputy CO of Gds Mech Rgt in 27th Mech Div, and then I think two sets of school courses in 1951, followed by

Deputy CO of 21st Gds Mech Rgt in 8th Gds Mech Div of 1st Gds Mech Army 29.2.52 and finally

Military Commandant of Military Commandantur District 122 18.11.52 ( = ???)

before being retired.

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  • 2 months later...

A couple of days ago I visited a guy who had a lot of Soviet awards for sale. I bought several of them, including the Order of Lenin below. Coincidentally I was going through Savelyev's documents again and I noticed that this Order of Lenin was on Savelyev's Award Record Card! :speechless1: They both came from the same seller, so I think that explains the coincidence...

So, now these two awards have been promoted from 'singles' to 'a broken group'. :cheers:

Auke

olen1v.jpgolen1a.jpg

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A couple of days ago I visited a guy who had a lot of Soviet awards for sale. I bought several of them, including the Order of Lenin below. Coincidentally I was going through Savelyev's documents again and I noticed that this Order of Lenin was on Savelyev's Award Record Card! :speechless1: They both came from the same seller, so I think that explains the coincidence...

So, now these two awards have been promoted from 'singles' to 'a broken group'. :cheers:

Auke

olen1v.jpgolen1a.jpg

Thats fantastic news always glad to see groups reunited :jumping:

Order of Victory

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Now there's only four to go.... :rolleyes:

Exactly! So I contacted the seller and asked him if he had more of Savelyev's awards. He fortunately kept a list of all the pieces he ever had. The Red Banners and Red Star 958334 weren't on it, but Red Star 213445 was! Unfortunately the seller sold that one, but he remembered who he had sold it to. I told the seller I really wanted to buy or trade that Red Star so he is going to contact the buyer. :cheers:

Auke

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  • 1 month later...

And here's the complete translation of the citation:

"Comrade Savelyev has worked as the chief of the intelligence section, personally leading and organizing combat reconnaissance.

During combat from 15.10.43 through 3.11.43, Savelyev has done a good job of organizing intelligence, always knowing which army the Front was facing and its intentions, and making correct conclusions and proposals concerning enemy actions.

Comrade Savelyev personally and repeatedly conducted reconnaissance on 18.10.43 and led a reconnaissance group near Popelnastoye. [??] prisoner and discerned the actions of the 161st Infantry Division in his sector. On the night of 19.10 he correctly organized listening posts, which aided the discovery of the enemy's intentions in the assigned sector.

Due to his personal participation in a combat reconnaissance mission, on 21.10.43 an enemy prisoner was captured [??] kilometers in the enemy rear area, which revealed the arrival of the 736 Tank Destruction Battalion in our Front's area of operations.

While accomplishing the order to determine the enemy's disposition along the Front on [??]11.43, reconnaissance was well set to seize prisoners and capture enemy documents.

Comrade Savelyev personally participated in a combat reconnaissance mission west of Iskrovka along the Savchin ravine.

As a result of the night-time reconnaissance, prisoners were captured from the 10th Motorized Regiment and 14th Tank Division near Alekseyevka, 23rd Tank Division, assault batallion [??] and documents of the Tank Division Totenkopf near Nedai Voda, that permitted full disclosure of the enemy's composition facing the Front. Savelyev is deserving of the Order of the Red Banner."

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  • 5 weeks later...

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