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Excellent Serviceman of the WPRA (Otlichnik RKKA)

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Authorized in 1939, these badges were only awarded from the spring of 1940 until the beginning of the Great Patriotic War when-- although never OFFICIALLY cancelled, they simply seem to have ceased being processed and awarded.

I always thought these were much more for Enlisted Comrades than Officer Comrades, though the foundation statutes made this an all ranks badge. What got me thinking about these was finding this private photo today of an unnamed Medical Corps Colonel circa 1946 wearing one:

Aside from the :banger: HITLER mustache, he seems to have gotten nothing except long service Orders. The 3rd medal MIGHT be a lowly MMM rather than a campaign medal--which would then be his only "real" award. How "excellent" was THAT?

I've had these two of the same man for years--

Pavel Yaklovlievich Kamzolov is first seen circa 1947 as an Air Force Aviation Technical Service Senior Lieutanant:

Excellent WPRA, Red Banner (surely not for long service!), Victory Over Germany-- and stamped by the Chief of Administration of MANUFACTURING.

Here Kamzolov is again, as an ATS Captain on 2 February 1951:

He's added qualifiued flight engineer wings, DROPPED the Excellent WPRA, added a Lenin (surely not for long service!), and the 1947 Moscow and 1948 Armed Forces Jubilee Medals. Now he was with the laboratory of "Faculty (Kafedra) 17"--all verrrry secretive and sinister sounding. :rolleyes:

So: how likely were OFFICERS to have gotten this badge?

Was there a time when they ceased being officially wearable-- between 1947 and 1951?

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The Red Army didn't have much bling-bling in late 30ties or early 40ties. So if you could get some you'd wear it. Officers were also more likely to be "excellent" in what they had as their profession than enlisted men. But I haven't got any statistics on who actually got it.

Here is a pic of a artillery captain wearing the badge on the other/first side. The only one I have...

Nice pics you found!


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  • 5 years later...

This badge was introduced by SNK USSR decree # 1889 on November 14, 1939.

Badge was awarded to servicemen of the Red Army (soldiers, students of military schools and officers) for excellent combat and political training, service and discipline.

The first 200 badges were awarded on May 1940 to the servicemen of division named after Dzerzhinsky.

How many of them are out there?

Somewhere between 200 000 and 250 000 pieces ;)

Edited by JapanX
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There were several manufacturers.

The main manufacturer was Leningrad Mint.

44 806 pieces were minted in 1940 and another 104 300 pieces in 1941.

Official cost of one piece was 7 rubles 18 kopecks.

In toto 149 106 pieces was made by July 1941.

After the start of war production (not awardings!) was halted and never resumed.

Edited by JapanX
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Another three manufacturers of this badge were

HZO DSO "Motor"/ХЗО ДСО «Мотор» (approximately 20 000 pieces)

Enamel fabric M.T.X./Эмальерная фабрика M.T.X. (approximately 24 000 pieces)

Factory «Leningrad Enameler»/фабрика “Лен. Эмальер” (unknown number)

Let`s take a look at them ;)

Edited by JapanX
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