«Charon» returns the names of the heroes

In Russia there are places where the land mines and shells pitted, keeps the remains of those who for nearly seven decades ago, defended our right to a free life. When you step on it, you feel what the price went to Victory in the Great Patriotic War. For the statistics of the fallen and missing — hundreds of thousands of mothers, wives, sisters, and that was not to learn the fate of their loved one.

On the eve of the anniversary of the victory in the country undergo Memory Watch and the solemn ceremonies at the disposal of the remains of Soviet soldiers who died in the Great Patriotic War. Thousands of dead soldiers and commanders just decades after the death find their final resting place. But hundreds of thousands still remain there, where they took their last stand in the smoothed time bunkers, dugouts and trenches, in forgotten graves care. The exact number is not buried soldiers is still unknown.

Thankfully, there are organizations and people who are engaged in the resurrection of the dead from oblivion the names of the heroes, were left lying on the battlefield. Such caring people rallied in the search party «Charon», formed on the basis of the Kostroma vocational school number 9.

The history of the group «Charon» is from 1966, when a vocational school number 9 was formed exploratory club «Seekers», one of the objectives of which was the collection of materials on the history of the Yaroslavl Communist Lomonosovo-Prague Order of Suvorov and Bogdan Khmelnitsky 234th Infantry Division formed Kostroma on the ground. In 25 years of existence, the search of the club «Seekers», the participants together with the veterans have passed hundreds of kilometers from Smolensk, where a baptism of fire divisions, to Berlin, collecting the crumbs of the story of the legendary connection.

The «vague» years, occurred as the beginning of «perestroika», the search operation of the club «Seekers» stopped. In 2008, a new search party «Charon.» It owes its name to Alexei Nikolayevich Seleznev — the head of the group. Title searchers have not surprising, as in Greek mythology, Charon — the name of the old man, which is a boat to cross the river Styx into the underworld of Hades god of the dead souls of the dead people.

What motivates people who are taking part in the search work? Oh, obviously not the desire for profit, though about search engines is often said that, they say, they are driven by self-interest: looking for trophies and relics for sale. These idle speculation far from the truth: men on watch Memory primarily involve heightened sense of honor and duty, interest in the past, personal responsibility for the fate of their country. And yet — guilt and shame true patriots of that state for more than seven decades, can not pay their last respects to the defenders. «Nobody is forgotten, nothing is forgotten» — it sounds, of course, beautiful. But how close to the truth of this phrase?

Few outsiders is that a job search engine. And it is not easy. Excavation — this is only the visible part of the job search engine.

«They were preceded by long archival and library research, the study of combat documents, lists and reports, communication with local residents, participants and witnesses of fights, showing their burial sites, correspondence with military enlistment offices, and more, without which the search is simply impossible», — says Sergey Shiyanov , the head of the field prospecting group «Charon.» To search resulted in its memory of his grandfather, who fought a tanker during the Great Patriotic War. He never talked about the war, apparently, very hard for him was to remember her. But on May 9 every year, when the family gathered for the holiday table, he raised the first toast for the dead, did not return from the war.

For Sergey, like other search engines detachment Memory Watch is not just any event, but a state of mind, and people looking for «sick» remain faithful to him for many years.

Archive and library work is the perhaps the most tedious, requiring perseverance and patience to work. The end result is his most complete picture of the fighting that took place on the specific territory, a place of combat military units and individual military burial. On how many will be able to install in archival work, will largely depend on the effectiveness of future actions directly on the ground.

For instance, an old map of hostilities of any unit can be set lines of defense, strongholds, fire stations, etc. counterattacks directions In these places, as a rule, and units suffered the greatest losses. Experience has shown that it is there and should be looked dead.

They help search engines and local residents. For example, one of the villagers Kalizna, Belevsky district of Tula region have sanitary burial place, where in the course of Memory Watch 2011 raised the remains of 90 people.

Next, and perhaps the main stage of the search operation «Charon» is the field work directly on the search of the lost soldiers. Squad — participated in many field expeditions conducted on the basis of the Tula regional youth center search «seeker» in the framework of the international project «Our Victory», as well as field trips in the Pskov region. It places the most intense fighting in July 1941 on the remains of dead fighters battle your way restored the 118th Infantry Division, formed in the Kostroma land.

For this squad deploys permanent camp and begins to work. Life in the camp is literally under the statute. There are strictly observed routine, safety requirements, because during search operations present a particular risk factor. High organization and strict discipline — these are the components of success.

Also experienced searchers, go to the forest and the newcomers who come here at the behest of the heart.

Search work — it though fascinating, but very difficult — it is not carefree school holidays and recreation in nature, so not every enthusiast can endure.

Judge for yourself: because in order to get to the place of work, and sometimes have to travel many kilometers on the road, wading through a forest fallen trees and other natural obstacles, which can not be compared, no «obstacle». We have to carry the shovels, metal detectors, probes and other necessary tools, as well as water and food for the whole day, not to return to the camp for lunch.

It can be a long story, in a matter of minutes experienced searchers determined that it is in the ground, as the bite they shoveled the clay, as carefully, layer by layer, remove the ground to hand assemble all the «bone» and not miss anything essential. Most Valuable — «death medallions» in ebonite capsule which lay a note with these fighters, the reward or some thing inscribed nominal spoon, pot, cigarette case, which allows to set the name of the deceased.

For example, during the spring Memory Watch 2011 near the village of Orel region Vygonovky searchers «Charon» raised the remains of a warrior on his chest which was well preserved license plate «Honorable road.» By the way, this is perhaps particularly significant finding squad in the modern history of its existence, because of the number plate there is a great chance to establish the name of the gentleman, and try to find his family.

«Everyone» name «fighter — great, but unfortunately rare luck — said Alexey Seleznyov. — In accordance with the Order №138 from NKO 03.15.1941, was introduced «medallion of death», a name which the liner filled in duplicate. In addition, the ear of superstition fighters are not always filled, saying that if a note filled, you will certainly die. So the remains are found most often without the medallion, do not read, or not completed, and set the name of the deceased is not possible. «

Identify and rebury the remains of soldiers is important, but equally important for «Charon» to find their relatives.

Thus, the efforts of search engines, the number of relatives were found nearly seventy years of missing the Red Army in 1085, the joint venture of 322 cd Egor Nechayev Arsentevich 1901 year of birth, native village of the district Efimova Manturovo Kostroma region. Thanks to its well-preserved and read in the Book of Remembrance medallion Kostroma region, numbering 11 volumes, another missing soldier was less. And, in fact, it has been restored his honor.

In December 2009, a medallion of his grandfather, the capsule lands from the battlefield were given to his grandchildren.

In addition to working in the expeditions, the search engines «Charon» participate in scientific conferences and various projects. For example, participation in the international scientific and practical conference «The search movement in the CIS and Baltic countries: from history to modernity», held in 2009 in Tula, allowed the squad to establish a close relationship with the search squads operating in different regions of the country. This allowed a more active exchange of information accumulated, relatives of the victims wanted to expand Kostroma.

The backbone of the search group of young people: students, lyceum students, university students, often — troubled teens. The boys feel themselves in, in extreme situations, see that such a partnership, mutual aid. They really feel their own involvement in his country’s history, and the Great Patriotic War, now dimly illuminated the pages of history textbooks, as if brought before them in reality. According to the observation of an experienced teacher-searcher, head of the center of spiritual development Kostroma vocational school №9 Irina Lyubimov, young searchers active than their peers perceive the history of our country, stung by the events, read more. Even to school, they are more responsible than others.

To go to a search expedition, applicants need to withstand competition, unable to keep up in school, to be disciplined, and as a result, many seriously raise their level of performance, especially for basic military training and history.

Undoubtedly, a great role in military-patriotic and moral education of the young generation of Kostroma played by Lyceum Museum, which hosted the event held in both urban and regional scale. Particularly interesting exhibitions organized detachment of the results of the work done, which take place not only at the Lyceum of the museum, but also beyond.

Sergei Shiyanov with special pride tells the story of the museum exhibition, a unique material which is going to literally bit by bit, being brought to the place of combat. The stands and shelves are presented with photographs of various vigil years, samples of weapons and ammunition, elements of uniforms and equipment, personal belongings of soldiers and more.

Among the exhibits — a simple aluminum spoon, by the inscription on which «Ivan Efimov, Yaroslavl region, Susaninsky District» not only managed to identify the remains of a warrior, but also to find his relatives. Now she is in a special place of honor and constantly drowning in vibrant colors, is a symbol of admiration of museum visitors.

Brought from places of fights exhibits, affectionately called silent witnesses of war, reminiscent of the terrible war years. These artifacts are publicly available, and taking them in hand, not only to feel the echo of the last war, but also become aware of the price paid by the Soviet people, bringing victory.

Great help in the design of the museum to the participants of the war. In the museum, many of them handed over their letters, awards, collections, memories and pictures. Here is the most expensive relics.

A special recognition of the work unit of the state became the diploma of the President of the Russian Federation, which «Charon» was awarded on the basis of search activity in 2010.

Word that the war is not over until then, until the last of the dead buried her soldiers loyal in nature. The feat of the heroes can not be forgotten. Respect for the memory of the fallen defenders of the Fatherland is a sacred duty and national matter, and therefore, the search operation continues, without stopping for a minute.

Lt. Col. Dmitry Samosvat

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