July 17, 1941, Falconer, near Krychau, the Germans were buried in the evening an unknown Russian soldier. Yes, this is a Soviet soldier buried the enemy. With honors. Much later, it became clear that it was a gun commander 137th Infantry Division 13th Army Sergeant Nicholas Sirotinin.
In the summer of 1941 in the Belarusian town Krichev broke through the 4th Armored Division Heinz Guderian, one of the most talented German generals soldiers. Part of the 13th Soviet army retreated. Departed not only gunner Kohl Sirotinin — just a boy, a small, quiet, puny. Then he just turned 19 years old.
"There remain two people with a gun," — said the commander of the battery. Nicholas volunteered. The second was the commander himself. Kohl took up a position on a hill right on the collective farm. The gun was drowning in a high rye, but it was clearly visible highway and bridge over a rivulet Dobrost. When the head tank came to the bridge, Kohl's first shot knocked him. The second shell set fire to armored personnel carrier, bringing up the rear, creating a traffic jam.
It is not clear so far, why Kohl remained in the field alone. But the version is. He probably just had a task — create a bridge "plug", the lead car shot down Nazis. Lieutenant at the bridge and adjusted the fire, and then, apparently caused by congestion of the other German tanks fire of our artillery. Because of the river. It is known that the lieutenant was wounded and then he went in the direction of our positions. There is speculation that Kohl had to withdraw to their completing the task. But … he was 60 shells. And he was!
Two tanks tried to pull off the head tank to the bridge, but also were hit. Armored vehicle tried to overcome the river Dobrost not on the bridge. But stuck in the muddy shore, where he found her the next round. Kohl's shot and fired, knocking the tank for tank …
Guderian's tanks ran into Kohl Sirotinina as the Brest Fortress. Already burned 11 tanks and armored personnel carriers 7! The fact that more than half of them burned one Sirotinin — precisely (and got some artillery from across the river.) Nearly two hours of this strange fight the Germans could not understand where the entrenched Russian battery. And when they came to the position of Colin were very surprised that if only one gun. In Nicholas had only three shells. Offered to surrender. Kohl responded by firing at them with a rifle.
After the battle, Lieutenant 4th Armored Division Henfeld wrote in his diary:
"July 17, 1941. Falconer, near Krychau. In the evening, burying an unknown Russian soldier. He was alone at the gun, shot the long column of tanks and infantry, and was killed. All were amazed at his courage … Oberst (Colonel) in front of the tomb said that if all the soldiers fighting Hitler, like this one Russian, we win the whole world. Three times the salvos fired from rifles. After all, he was a Russian, whether such worship? "
In the afternoon, the Germans gathered at the place where there was a gun. There also forced to come to us, the locals — says Verzhbitskaya. — I like knowing the German language, the main German with orders ordered to translate. He said that as a soldier must defend their homeland — Vaterland. Then out of his shirt pocket of a dead soldier got our locket with the note, but who is coming from. The main German said to me, "Take and write their mother tongue. Let the mother know how her son was a hero and he died. " I was afraid to do it … Then who was standing in the tomb and covered the Soviet cape Sirotinina body of a young German officer snatched me a piece of paper and a medallion and said something rude.
The Nazis long after the guns were at the funeral and the tomb in the middle of the collective farm fields, not without admiration counting shots and hits.
Today, in the village of Falconer grave, in which the Germans buried Kohl, no. Three years after the war, the remains of Coley moved to a mass grave, the field was plowed and planted, passed a junk gun. Yes, and it was called a hero 19 years after the deed. And not even the Hero of the Soviet Union — he was posthumously awarded the Order of the Patriotic War I level.