This photo is well known, it can be found on the Internet easily on many resources. Yes, except for the signature “Young intelligence officer Vanya Mikhalenko, Kalininsky Front, 1942 year”, there is nothing.
But this is also a snapshot of Ivan Alexandrovich Narcissov. The photographed fighter Vanya is only fourteen years old. He met with a war correspondent in the Kholmsky district, and Narcissus wrote a note about the lad, published in the Soviet Guardsman. The note is small, there is not enough information. But in the diary of Ivan Alexandrovich the story about Vanya is more detailed.
“He served in a separate reconnaissance. You see him in the photograph of those years. The young scout volunteer destroyed five fascists. Awarded the medal "For Courage".
I remember how the commander of the reconnaissance company, sighing, said:
- The fate of Vanya is very tragic ...
Indeed, the soul of Vanya was terribly scorched. In the autumn of 1941, fascists broke into the village of Maximovo in the Kholmsky district, where Vanya lived. Looting and violence began. On the frosty day of January 1942, the fascists mounted machine guns on the outskirts of the village. Among those condemned to death were old men, women, children. Vanya Mikhalenko stood next to younger sisters, mother, grandmother. With tears in his eyes, he looked at the village set on fire.
- I also thought, - Vanya recalled, - what is it? Where will we live?
Suddenly, there were machine-gun bursts. Shot by the bullets, the grandmother, mother, and three sisters fell. Vanya fell unconscious. This saved his life. Late in the evening, when the moon rose, the boy woke up. He crawled out from under the numbed bodies. Gone to the forest. There he met with combat intelligence officers from the 3 Shock Army. They helped the boy cross the front line. At his request, he was enrolled in a separate intelligence agency. Here he fought with the Nazis - avenged the desecrated land. Here he was awarded the medal "For Courage". Scout soldiers told me:
- He is a true hero!
Later, I learned that in the 1943 year, Ivan Mikhalenko was abandoned to the 4 guerrilla brigade to perform a special mission, in which he fought heroically until the complete expulsion of the fascists from Novgorod land. He was awarded six more government awards. After the war, he became a resident of the Kaliningrad region ... "
There is another fact. Not only for the destruction of the five fascists gave Vanya the first medal. He captured the German captain. He took it alone! It was at night, in the winter of 1942. Vanya was returning from his assignment. No weapons I did not have one with me. And imagine, almost got to my own, only about a quarter of an hour left when I saw a fascist on the road. Lost, it was immediately clear. I did not know the road, I walked - either I was left without a car, or for some other reason. Vanya is still a child, he could lay low and wait - the German would have passed by and not noticed, it was dark after all. But the nature of the boy did not allow. I picked up two sticks from the ground, sneaked up behind me, poked both of them in the back of the enemy and barked: “Come on! Hands up!.."
And let's vote in different ways, as if not one goes. So all fifteen minutes and shouted in every way that Fritz did not come to his senses. He did not come to his senses - without any attempts to resist, he came straight to the partisans. And when he saw who took him prisoner and with what weapon, they said, he wept ...
Brave orphan Vanka, who captured the fascist
- Sofya Milyutinskaya