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Winning Fear: 10 little-known facts about Ivan Kozhedub

On June 8, Ivan Nikitovich Kozhedub would have turned 98 years old. The site of the TV channel “Zvezda” tells about the milestones of the famous ace’s life.


Photo: Defense Ministry / Chernov / Ivan Shagin / Galina Kmit / RIA Novosti / USAF / /

1. In 10 years, Vanya Kozhedub nearly drowned in the river. If it were not for Alexander’s great brother, the great pilot, we might not even know.

2. First, the instructor Kozhedub in the Chuguev Pilots School described Kozhedub as “a little slow”. But in the following courses he became the first to be admitted to independent flights.

3. For the first time Kozhedub saw Pokryshkin in 1944, but was afraid to approach him. Kozhedub himself explained this “with some kind of awkwardness.”

4. During the defeat of the Germans near Poznan, Kozhedub and his squadron lived in the house of Focke-Wulf, the same designer whose aircraft so often had to meet ours in the sky.

5. Ivan Kozhedub shot down two American aircraft at the end of the Great Patriotic War. Then, so that the pilot is credited with the shot down enemy he had to provide photos from the FKP (fotokinoopulemeta). When one of the American pilots who landed the damaged plane was asked who had brought it down, he answered Fokke-Wolf almost without hesitation. But films with FKP, indicating the opposite, just in case, Kozhedub took.

6. According to official data, Ivan Kozhedub shot down 62 enemy aircraft. However, this figure is likely more. After all, it was not always possible to fix the next shot down German at the FKP.

7. In all, there were three times three times the history of the hero of the Soviet Union – Marshal Budenny and two pilots-ace – Alexander Pokryshkin and Ivan Kozhedub.

8. Ivan Kozhedub himself called his wife Veronika his fourth star of the hero. True, to begin with, I arranged a test for the girl and did not say who he really was, but just started courting. And when he realized that his regalia and ranks would not be the main reason for their union, only then did he tell the future wife who he is.

9. In addition to the Great Patriotic War, Ivan Kozhedub also participated in the Korean War. Then the Americans started using their new F-86 “Saber”, which exceeded our MiG-15. Then Ivan Kozhedub commanded the 324th Fighter Division, which was ordered to “get the plane.” The order was even overfulfilled – two “Americans” had already “gone” to Moscow.

10. Ivan Kozhedub was in friendly relations with Vladimir Vysotsky. Once a famous pilot, and at that time the first deputy commander of the Air Force for combat training arrived in Tashkent on working issues to Alexei Mikoyan. Suddenly Vysotsky called and asked for a helicopter. Both famous pilots requested the musician’s request.

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