Chronicle of the unfeasible tasks

Colonel Vladimir Grandmother waged war in Chechnya only six months. But during that time he committed 720 sorties. And no! .. Only Night — 205, of which 115 had time to sit down on the ground in war zones. During the trip, he had brought from the battlefield the wounded more than five hundred men. But one night flight — January 9, 2000 — he will never forget …

Knows the Colonel Vladimir Grandmother:

— For me the second Chechen campaign began on September 27, 1999. The fighting in Dagestan, where I found, were already on the decline. But it was clear that the operation is preparing to block areas of Chechnya and storm severity.

At first, our main task was the evacuation of the wounded. Later, when our columns are included in the district of Chechnya, we have these columns to accompany and cover.

At first this trip, I flew on an MI-8 and MI-24, but then — just to MI-8. So it was that when recruiting our 85th Squadron was an error. Number of vehicles we have exactly the same as the number of helicopters. And, if the mind — the number of pilots had to be greater than the number of machines. After all, people were sick, and of economic affairs sought some break in flights. But if, as appropriate, crew flew the command of the squadron, the pilots, navigators had exactly the number of machines. And they prodyha for six months without flying every day. This is a very big load, not every person will stand her.

And our 85th Squadron had to stay in Chechnya three months as the others, namely six months. However, each of us offering vacation for 20 days. But I, for example, as presented to myself that I would go home, as I will later come back … and do not go.

At first all were afraid. For many it was the first campaign. Personally, I did not have any combat experience. But the failure to fly straight at us was not. Although, of course, from time to time, I myself beheld, when at that time a certain person is psychologically not ready to fly. This condition is not necessary pilot fly, and the need to give him some pause, that he came to himself. This was one of the main tasks of the squadron commanders — right to distribute and configure the people.

First strong resistance from the ground came in October 1999. Then at the MI-24 flew squadron commander Col. Victor E. Bogunov, and I was supposed to go at it by the operator (the operator controls the helicopter armament. — Ed.). Me and him was vneglasnaya agreement, if it flies, I'm sitting on the CP (command post. — Ed.), And vice versa. And here comes to me Vasjutin lieutenant, who came for the day before, and says: "I would go to the dining room." I do it and let it go. Once he was gone — the team on the flight! Squadron Commander: "Where Vasjutin? '. Me: "Let go of him to eat." He said: "Then you and I will fly together."

I sat down in the operator's cab, took the card, began a course to figure already included the equipment and all of a sudden I see: Vasjutin runs. I said: "Evgenich, Vasjutin out." He said: "You then get out, I'll fly with him." They flew.

But the plus to bad weather was of strongest opposition from the earth! .. All the helicopters returned to the airfield with holes. When they sat down, opened the Vasjutin blister and did not come out of the helicopter is very durable. And just sit silent. Later, I berated myself: well, so it was impossible to immediately throw into hell. But anticipate that he will get the first flight in a mess, it was unreal.

Also in October, we Misha Sinitsyn adjusted artillery fire. We fly at a height of about a thousand meters, and an artillery spotter with binoculars looking at the bridge over the Terek Cossack village in the scarlet, and on his radio reports: "To the right, to the left …". And here I see that all around us there are some small clouds, like in the movie "Heavenly slug." It was only later that I realized that this was for us anti-aircraft gun from the bridge works, but do not reach the shells and self-destruct. It was a little scary. But over time I got used to it.

Without helicopters in Chechnya just did: after all it was necessary to urgently get somewhere, and the helicopter — the best means of transport: fast and relatively harmless. Because I have been in the cockpit of two plates. I have my hands on the one hand cartons wrote "Lunch" and with — the other "The helicopter will not fly."

Arrives on the ground with the head of some or pick up the wounded — and here you start to walk around the people who need somewhere. Most of the willing to fly to Mozdok (Russian army base in the area of North Ossetia. — Ed.). You sit through the blister and every minute answering the same question: "Mozdok you fly? '. — "No". When you are tired to answer, you put a sign "Lunch." People is not going anywhere, patiently waits for lunch. Later flip the plate — all are tightened to read what is written on it. And then: "The helicopter will not fly."

Although naturally take. No one ever wrote down and did not really count. I caused myself, I take no more than 20 people. After all, I, too, could be wrong, especially when advancing weakness, because what-that gap by weight to maneuver me certainly needed.

At the end of December 1999 to a further assault Severe remained a one-day or two. At the headquarters group was a meeting. I'm sitting on the gearbox, I supervise flights. It calls Major Pokatilo and says: "Nikolaitch forced me to fly to Sunzhenskiy range. A lower edge of the cloud — 100 meters. " Sam ridge height of about five hundred meters, in other words, on a ridge just can not see anything. I said to him: "What do you mean? You can not fly under any circumstances! ". He said: "Let me here all the command group presses …". Me: "You still do not agree, I am at the moment nibudt'll think of something."

A fly can not as scary, but because you can not. But the infantry did prove that it is not only a violation of security measures. Well, think about how the pilot will go down in the mountains in the fog? He will not be able to find where the land, he did it just did not see it. Encounter with the slope — and all …

I called Pokatilo and say, "Yura, tell you there is no kerosene." He was delighted and generals says: "I have to kerosene range is not enough just to Kalinovskaya." (Military airfield, 20 kilometers north of the Crucible. — Ed.) They are: "Well, fly in KALINOVSKIY." After some time arrives Pokatilo and from his helicopter goes Gen. Mike Y. Malafeev (after a number of days, he died in combat during the assault Crucible). I went over, I welcome him, "Good morning, Comrade General! What did you come from? '. He says, "Oh, Grandmother, great! I uttered that what-then the other pilot on my Sunzhenskiy lucky. Do not Pokatilo kerosene. At the moment, I'll fly with others. "

I braked as much heart: with any other?!. I said: "No, no there are no other pilots! I have one here. " He said: "That's you and me povezesh».

I called the head of aviation grouping Colonel Vasily Stepanovich Kulinichev. I said: "What are you, a brain gone? And that to me now — just lay down his head himself, the crew and the General together with us? You think, what kind of puzzle you bet? '. He said: "Nikolaitch assist nothing I can do the task."

I Malafeeva say: "Comrade General, I am currently going to read to you the annotations for vertoletovozhdeniyu at least not dangerous heights …". He said: "You have brains that I soar? We fly — and everything. "

What do I do not kno
w. Calling the right pilot — Lt. Udovenko. Neither Major nor the captain, namely Lieutenant! I said to him: "Here Kalinovskaja where we are at the moment, here's playground in the mountains. Take off, go through the drive, and you turn on the stopwatch and Diss (a device that determines the speed of Putney. — Ed.). Pass 20 km, turn around. Again you turn on the stopwatch. And when we're in the area, you tell me: Commander, we are in the area. " While no satellite navigators and we did not exist.

We took off and immediately went into the clouds. We go to a height of seven meters into the clouds. The lieutenant says to me: "Commander, such a course." And includes a stopwatch. In other words, we are absolutely flying blind — no navigational aids, no-thing …

After a while, he says, "Captain, we are in the area." Heart sank — you need to drop. Where to go down? Around dense fog … stub out rate from two hundred and seventy, I put a slope of 20 degrees and wait for the ground tap. But because the rate of reduction meter and a half a second, because I console myself that if the tap, at least slightly. Barometric altimeter indicates altitude of 500 meters, and altimeter — 100 50 meters. Make a decision — is reduced to 100 by radio altimeter, and then I will leave. Well, do not grieve as consciously! And let me shoot later though …

Did not keep his word — ninety meters, eighty meters, seventy … I think: well all go away. I came out of the slope, and suddenly the cabin becomes darkly! .. And that means that I got out of the clouds and the ground nearby. And, do not believe — right in front of you see four fire landing site! .. And the speed I already landing. And I'm between these lights — bam! And sat …

The navigator on the right sits in a daze. I told him, "We have arrived where? '. He says: "I do not know …". General Malafeev out of the helicopter, "And read: … will not sit down." And he went about his business.

If this is not God's work, then what is it?!. Well as you can without radio equipment NIGHT MODE overcast look at this site in the mountains and sit down, not to touch any one slide around? ..

Occurred in January 2000. Fighting for Harsh were the most severe. January 9, here and there in the afternoon, I'm Lieutenant Colonel Kylinich reads: "You have to fly into the area Jalka, take ammo and pick up the wounded." Problem understandable. But I did not know what to Dzhalka Interior Ministry special forces convoy was ambushed between with 2 bridges, and particularly at the moment it is hard fight. To me about it then no one spoke.

Bad weather, fog. By the time we have, fortunately, has already appeared GPS (satellite navigation receiver for positioning. — Ed.). On the way, we made a rocket and bomb attacks in the mesquite-Yurt. We fly to Dzhalka, litsezreem appropriate benchmark — the elevator. On the road, vehicles stand, shooting from all sides is, the bullets are flying all around … And on top of understand — where the, where strangers — very hard. Sanya, the pilot-navigator, yelling: "From the elevator itself plume of flame went our way! ..". This anti-aircraft gun on us worked.

Reporting Kulinichev: "There is a fight … Where to sit? There gunner, then at least have to ask? And then sit down, and we will burn the helicopter. " He said: "Oh, really fight going? Then come back. "

I returned to Kalinouski let the crew and went into the dining room. I uttered that now I'm not going to fly, and fly tomorrow morning. We sit with the chief of the combat training Colonel Iksanov, having dinner. I drank honey to three glasses of brandy. Incidentally, three — is essentially three, three instead of 30. I cognac there in homeopathic doses perceived, to somehow pull off.

Here, they say to me: "Urgent call to the command." I called Kulinichev, "Stepanovich, what's the matter? '. He said: "Volodya, where the Chief of General Staff of the … situation is serious. Jalka need to fly, collect the wounded and the dead. " And time is eight o'clock pm, grimly. I said: "I was there the day: I could see nothing, and nothing is clear. And how do you imagine for yourself, I'll take care NIGHT MODE there? '.

But there is nothing … It is clear that the need to fly. Took the crew, jeep and drove to the airport. My boys said, "Go into the tent, and I — the CP."

The commander says, "Okay, we're going." I go out with the gearbox out and disgusted I do not believe: the fog villages such that the appearance of a maximum of 20 meters. Back to the phone: "We have the fog." Kylinich: "Since the mist everywhere! In Mozdok, Vladikavkaz … ". I"And how am I supposed to go there? .. Not going to fly. "

He says: "Who reported to the command." Vorachivaetsya: "Volodya, you need to fly." He's kind of like trying to persuade me. I"Do not fly. It's just killed. I have children … ".

And not that I'm scared. There just is not a criterion. You can not fly.

I decided to call the chief aviation group, Major General Bazarov. And there is not no one takes up … I called the chief KP — also one tube does not take. In the end, Lieutenant lifts: one no! But I hear they've got it! Hear with their ears, as they do give an indication, Say, let him accept the decision. Kulinichev say, "Stepanovich, well, I'm a coward! But there are still brave? ". He is silent. (Later, he confessed to me: "Volodya, all declined. But the chief of the General Staff said to us — do what you want, but let's go a helicopter. And that's it …").

I went out. Tumanische … My heart is a horror … I think: well, everything, it's time to say goodbye to the life … Sanya minute and Serge Romadi in a tent, and as I said to them, sit. Wait … I opened the door of the tent and said, "Sanya, on the flight …". Turned around, slammed the door and went silent. I go and I think: they who follow me or not? .. But they were going. They walked silently, silently.

Run the silent, silent soared. And here in the fog icing furious … After Terek were estimated range, I began to fall from a height of a thousand two hundred meters. Came out of the clouds at a height of 40 meters. Speed put out to seventy, and Sanya gives me a removal to the site. It appears, to his credit, that when we were here in the afternoon, he took a clear position of this point.

I can not see anything at all. A bit up — in the clouds a bit down — vysokovoltki. Warning unsafe altitude constantly roars: "A dangerous height, height … terrible." The navigator reads: "Removal of six …". Suddenly I saw a large square with lights. "Sanya, won it, for sure!". He told me: "Nikolaitch What do you mean? This is an area in Argun! There's fires burn. " Later, he warns: "It seems at the moment is, the removal kilometer." I did even less speed. He said: "Five hundred meters!". And suddenly I saw some lights.

I myself made a final decision — I will sit down. The second time just can not be. And the fight goes across the bottom: anti-aircraft gun to one side works the other … Flames circle mines explode … We sat down.

Infantry landing lights lit in the cartridges from the shells, rags stuffed there. Just sat down, I see — lights are gone, their fighters quickly extinguished. Sane said: "Take control, I'm going to understand." It turned out we got on the road, but close — the forest. From the trees to the edge of the screw had a half to two meters.

I decided not to go on the road, and immediately got into a roadside ditch. For this ditch and moved to the other side, whe
re the day was an APC. Came to the APC. Beside him, a man in a helmet sits somewhere and shoots. I moved it with his foot, "I am a pilot, where you wounded?". He said: "Yes, you fuck off! Here, all the wounded, not to you. " Who are we calling for what I came here? I have an APC to another — there are also all fired. Full-length afraid to stand up, the bullets fly. Suddenly out of the darkness begin to appear stretcher, wounded themselves wander. Are killed … I say, "There borttehnik will show how the ship."

I go back and ask the Sani: "How many have downloaded? '. — "For twenty people." Well, 20 — this is normal. And they all carry and bear … For May 20. I said: "Do not take."

One more thing that was bad — I refueling is complete. For 40 minutes, until the flying, well, the strength of the l. 500 spent. And in my tanks — three 500 50!

There are some military themselves came into the helicopter and climb. I look: yes they're completely healthy, with guns. I start to sew them. They told me: we are shell-shocked, and everyone here!

Killed brought in, four or five people. And in the cargo hold, and so people are already stacked to the ceiling. I'm their leader says, "Well, where I'm dead? His hands and feet tied. Contribute to their, perhaps, to carry? ". I said: "Well, throw wherever you want." 1st to me in the cab was pulled, and the other on top of the wounded had been abandoned. The wildest picture, send it the words just can not … And I climbed into the cab, stepping even know to whom and for what …

He sat on his seat, pondering like tracers fly … fly quite close. This is the sound of the working motor knocked "spirits." Shattered into fragments finder — the only device that helps the pilot to withstand the flight path in the absence of sight.

How to soar, where soar? .. I look: on the one hand — the forest, and on the other — such as a field. For myself, as a spell, I repeat: "The main thing is not to pull the stick back before the time … The main thing is to sustain acceleration in the rate of the earth … To sustain the glide path, do not waver, do not jerk the handle …". Turned the spotlight on a second, I start to turn away from the ramp to the right. And here Sanya as zaoret: "There wires! ..". And to me what to do? .. I — the helicopter to the other side! .. Trees shirkayut on the case, some shooting again … help us out just what sustained acceleration speed and lower edge of the cloud — 50 meters. Just take off — and immediately in the clouds! Now another problem — where fly? Throughout the fog with visibility least fifty meters.

I flew to Mozdok because it had been there many times. And there began the glaciation. Hear — the ice starts to roll down the blades, knocking the pole. I later decided that, taking into account the work-icing systems and heating engines, take-off weight, I had to be at least eleven thousand eight hundred kilograms. And he was almost fourteen hundred.

I — Sana'a, "You help me, I can not cope alone." And here is a colonel in the cab pulled up and began to shout: "I am the Deputy Commander, I need to Khankala». I was later Sanya said that Serge Romadi popularly explained to him who is on board a senior … More he did not stop us.

About an hour flies to Mozdok. And then the fog with visibility least 30 meters! But at least for the helicopter — down 50, around 500. It is provided that there are radio devices. And automatic radio does not work, his bullets shattered. How to enter the land? Lucky that controlled flight in Mozdok was a real ace. And Sanya with his GPS has promoted healthy. Shvarknulis on the strip, but not broken.

Manager: "Where are you? '. Me: "We got here and there, like betonka under me." He said: "Sit down, no handlebars." After a while approaching the four "nurse", "pozharka." They drove around the airfield, we have found. It turned out that I sat right in the middle of the airfield, as it should be.

It began as the wounded in the "nurse" to download — they already have springs in the rear side bulged out! We do not know exactly how many people we brought. I thought that we have loaded the wounded 20 three and four killed. But Sania, who considered them already during unloading, figured more than 30.

Anywhere we are, of course, to this day, did not fly. In Mozdok just had a crew of 26 MI-torzhka. Sania says, "Let's go to Grechushkin». The crew lived in this Munitions. They poured us a half a glass of alcohol, and later, I remember, I went to bed at no pipes to lay a board.

We drove often killed because to this terrible spectacle of all used. But this time it was so wild and scary that I did not let go immediately — day or just vomited four times. And when I looked at myself in the mirror, I saw that my beard was quite gray … But the war ended for me in three months. Ahead was the NIGHT MODE and engine failure in the clouds, and getting under the fire of their own as artillery, and our helicopter shot out of the tank. And more than three hundred sorties …

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