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    Defying Death on the Dnieper River

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    (Translation courtesy of Rick Research)

    Citation for Order of the Red Banner shows him as company commander {{{because of casualties?}}} in the 200th GRR/ 68GRD:

    ?On 24th September 1943 for forcing the River Dnieper with the regiment, in the area of the city of Shtuch?ino, Kiev Oblast, Comr. Kuliba was the first to cross his company to the right bank of the River Dnieper and quickly seized the directed boundaries. In the course of the first two days, repulsed 14 enemy counterattacks. Comr. Kuliba at all times participated in combat conditions, skillfully led in combat, demonstrated heroism and firmness."

    Deserves to be awarded the Order ?of the Red Banner.?

    2 October 1943 Commander 200th Gds Rifles Rgt, Lieutenant Colonel ?Bushtruk?

    4 October 1943 Deserves to be awarded the Order ?of the Red Banner?

    Commander 68th Gds Rifles Division, Major General ?{{{illegible}}}?

    {No Date} Deserves to be awarded the Order ?of the Red Banner?

    Commander of Forces, 40th Army, Lieutenant General ?Moskalenko?

    Commander of Front Military Council, Major General ?Kra?ikov? ?

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    So.... the veritable shower of Hero Stars that were given for this forced crossing (what is it, 25% of the WW2 total for this one action?) and our very Jr. officer gets his ORB..... nothing more. Then quietly returns to a life on the Collective Farm.

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    Guest Rick Research

    It always amazes me to read Soviet personnel records. He never left his Kholkhoz except for the war. Stopped going to school at age 12. Was a Second Lieutenant at 33--

    and commanded the first company over the Dnieper in his regiment, holding out for two weeks of ceaseless attacks.

    How many made it over the river alive? At the end of those 14 days, how many men in his company were still alive?

    He was wounded in action three times in the two years he was at the front, before the last one did for him in early 1945.

    Oh how I wish for REGIMENTAL histories, with casualty and award rolls.

    How many Hero Stars did HIS regiment get before somebody decided the over-aged farmer-Lieutenant didn't "rate" one because the "quota" had been filled up already?

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    With reference to the date given above the commander of 68th Gds RD was Major-General Georgii Petrovich Isakov, and I believe the unidentified Major-General 'Kra?ikov' would have to be Major-General (as he were at the time) Konstantin Vasilevich Krainiukov, member of the military council (Political Commissar) of Voronezh Front.

    For a bit more details on these two gentlemen please see:



    Kind Regards

    Steen Ammentorp

    The Generals of World War II

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    Guest Rick Research

    Thanks Steen! It is very often (more often than not, unfortunately) difficult to read signatures--even when typed underneath-- due to the poor qualuty of the original paper :banger: , 60+ years age :banger: , and the :banger: BINDING that doesn't allow for GOOD xeroxing :banger: .

    I shudder to think what all the records will look like assuming they are still around 60 years from now.


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    • 2 weeks later...

    Just a few words about history of this order. I've bought it in Kiev in 1998 for 25 USD :D

    For almost 8 years it was in my collection, but half year ago I bought similar Red Banner, which was a part of the big group. That's why I decided to sell it out. Order is in excellent condition and has a special mark "7" on the reverse.

    I'm really happy that this order is in good hands now :beer:

    Here is a fragment with "7".

    Edited by MONDVOR
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    Interesting thing is this one is a (relatively) low number for the type...... and a 'typical' suspended piece. I have one about 5K higher that is a typical T2 Screwback, retooled as a suspended piece and the plow blade still touches the staff!!

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    Hi Gerd, compare to this one, courtesy of CollectRussia.com

    #104305, right in our range, but the plow blade doesn't touch and in fact, Igor mentions this as very unusual for this serial number range. I think we can safely assume that one fello engraved all these numbers!

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    Hi Rick,

    i think, its a matter of how much white enamel was used on these Orders. I have seen both on early Type 3 ORB?s, with touching plow and with a non touching plow.


    Exactly! The relationship between the plow and banner's handle determined only by the amount of white enamel applied to the order.

    Compare two orders with close serial numbers...

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