That day (Either 22 or 23 of June, since Nadezhda Baidachenko clearly remembers that 24, together with other students, left to help the villagers in the harvest, from which they were then sent to dig trenches. She returned to Stalino only in the first numbers October.) they were sitting together with a fellow student on Stalino's Fire Square (they call it that way in Donetsk today, although it officially bears the name of Dzerzhinsky from 1927). Around was so serene and peaceful ... Some plane circled high above the city. They talked, however, about the war - that it would not last for long, which means there is no point in going to officer courses, as suggested by the military registration and enlistment office. Better right to the front. "... And it is absolutely wrong that the girls are taken only with medical training!" Nadia jumped up in her hearts, remembering a conversation with the military commissar: such an argument as her Voroshilovsky marksman badge didn’t affect him either.
... Students have already reached the first line - the main street of the city (officially from Artem's 1928), when an explosion thundered from behind. Only after that the air-raid siren howled. They ran - but not in the bomb shelter, but turning back to the Fire Department. From the shop where they sat a few minutes ago, and there was no slivers left. In its place a funnel was smoking. The first bomb (Apparently, this was the case about which they write “on the first day of military operations, a bomber broke through to Stalin, but anti-aircraft guns repulsed him.” Later, the Nazis bombed the city twice more: they wanted to seize numerous enterprises in working condition, because failed (www.infodon.org.ua/stalino/191)), dropped on Stalin, seems to have been marked in Hope. And only slightly late. In the future, this happened more than once ...
What is the worst thing about a front-line anti-aircraft battery? Raid This is when enemy planes arrive specifically to destroy anti-aircraft guns that do not allow our troops to bomb with impunity. This is not something that during the bombing in the rear, where the pilots rush to drop their deadly cargo on the object and turn it back. On the battery rush waves. One wave after another, time and time again ... It can last for an hour or even more.
In other parts, you can hide from bombs - in dugouts, crevices, but at least in a trench - and he will protect against fragments. But anti-aircraft gunners can not hide - it is necessary to repel the raid. What is the protection from the bombs and fragmentation bombs that are aimed at the battery? Only a helmet and an earthen parapet around the anti-aircraft gun - low, so as not to interfere with the rotation of the gun.
The earth groans from near continuous breaks. Acrid smoke clouds the position of the battery. And the girls, ignoring the hail of squealing fragments, violently shoot at the planes. This is also the best defense: the dense fire of anti-aircraft guns prevents the enemy from bombing the guns precisely. Not all "raiders" returned to base. But the battery suffered heavy losses. How many girlfriends had to be buried ...
At the commander's voice chronically hoarse - breaks every time during the battle. We have to shout in the throat to hear the command. From shooting heavy guns girls stall, blood flows from the ears. So do not understand - is it a fragmentation wound? Then, after the battle will understand.
And the raid will end - and, it happened, as the anti-aircraft gunners begin to laugh. So they relieve nervous tension - after all, death was very close, but still - by. Such a reaction seems strange to the combat commander, but he long ago abandoned attempts to comprehend female psychology. The men - after the battle, they took out a shag, folded up a cigarette, hungrily eagerly; it is, of course, much clearer.
The girls still did not miss the chance to attack, recalling the "funny" battle episodes. Especially got the few men who fell into the women's division. In the heat of battle, the corporal Sobakin shell dropped the anti-aircraft guns on the frame - then everyone who saw it, for a moment died down. But when it is already behind - as you remember, parses the laughter. Always all the bumps fell on that Sobakin. I ran into the memory of his last name for life. But what was the name of an elderly gunman who hails from a Jewish town in Ukraine - was completely forgotten. Girls also often laughed at him - they, after all, remained under fire, and he was hiding in a dugout with the start of the raid. But as soon as the red-hot gun jammed and the loud cry of the battalion commander was heard: “Masters!” - he is already there, running with his tool to the silenced anti-aircraft gun. He knows his business and soon, having eliminated the malfunction, he also promptly returns to the shelter.
What is the heaviest on the zenith battery? Shells Most often they are brought up at night - a dozen or two trucks. All are on unloading. The girls, straining, dragging heavy boxes, fearing to let the load slip from their hands. Finally, they were transferred to the warehouse - but there is no time for respite either. Now everyone needs to open, remove the shells, wipe from the factory grease and again put in place. And my hands hurt and tremble after unloading, it is terrible to take a slippery shell. Finally done with it.
It remains part of the ammunition to bring to the anti-aircraft guns. Already dawns. Germans are flying - it is necessary to open barrage fire. Sometimes, during the day, they fired everything that they unloaded during the night. And again at nightfall they will deliver ammunition. Hundreds of boxes of incredible gravity. But these are girls. They still have to give birth - to those who survive.
"I cried back to the battery"
Hitchhiker, however, hoped Nadezhda would be able to get rid of the deadly hell of raids and exhausting soldier’s artillery labor. And this is due to her literary talent.
Probably, the paternal genes and the influence of Donetsk writers affected. Father - Fyodor Baidachenko - was a multifaceted gifted person. In his youth, working as a turner, was also known in the factory as a self-taught artist. The team gave him a proletarian direction to study and raised money for a trip to Moscow. And this is during the civil war! True, a professional artist Fedor Ivanovich did not. Time demanded otherwise - to fight and build.
He was secretary of the district committee, he was in charge of the “culture” of the region, wrote stories and even headed the Union of Donbass Writers. He was friends with Vladimir Sosyura, Peter Chebalin, Pavel Beskhadny, Boris Gorbatov, Pavel Beidebura. Writers loved to gather at home with the hospitable Baidachenko, discussed the books, argued. It is not surprising that Nadezhda chose the Faculty of Philology. And the teachers were so impressed with the knowledge of literature that they even offered to stay in the department before graduation. But the war decreed its fate in its own way.
At the front, Nadia repeatedly wrote about anti-aircraft gunners to an army newspaper. And then suddenly the order came: to send private Baidachenko N.F. to the editors. But not for the same, she rushed to the front in order to "sit out" in relative safety, when her friends risk their lives every day! No matter how hard the editor tried to convince the girl that there would be more benefit from her, it was in vain. A few days later surrendered. As Nadezhda Fyodorovna later explained: “I cried for a return to the battery.” And there the battalion met with abuse: “Fool! Alive to stay! And he would get an officer rank! ”He had become rude in the war, but was worried about his girls, who had no right to hide from bombs.
Despite all the dangers, Nadezhda didn’t get a bomb. And by the end of the war and raids on the battery was gone. The last time it whistled at the temple (hitting the ear) in May 45-th on the street of the German town. Yes, not a fragment, not a bullet ... and a lighter. And again - no, not incendiary bomb. Just a massive gasoline lighter. Some aspiring fascist threw it from the top of the window of the building, aiming at the head. But he missed. Do not wait!
This year Nadezhda Fyodorovna will celebrate the 95 anniversary. And she kept that lighter. And gave her grandson along with a cigarette case, which is made of a piece of metal from the body of a German aircraft, shot down by their anti-aircraft battery.
Soloist with "lips"
Girls and at the front remained girls. They loved to chat, sing in chorus or singly. By some miracle, managed to get perfume and powder. Everyone wanted to be beautiful, and taking care of their appearance was far from the last place. When Nadi suddenly appeared on the face and began to increase the mole - without thinking twice, cut it off with a razor. Blood could not stop a few hours. The battalion commander threatened to surrender to the tribunal for self-harm.
The case, of course, did not reach the tribunal. But it was possible to sit in the guardhouse. True, on a very different occasion. On the birthday of a friend, Nadezhda changed the soldier's clothes for moonshine in the near village. Returning, I hit the battalion commander ... Under the "lip" they adapted the pit at the position of the battery. It was allowed to get out of there only for shooting at planes (there was no security).
And then suddenly Rokossovsky himself arrived at the battery. They say he unexpectedly liked to descend into the lower units, try porridge from the soldiers' boiler, talk to the rank and file. Once the composition of the girl, asked: do the girls sing? Or not before in a war? And what songs without Hope. They rushed after her - flatly refuses to get out of the pit. The battalion commander appeared, ordered to go and sing to the authorities: “Then you will see yours.”
She came out, as she was, ardent - the belt of the guardhouse was not laid. She sang her favorite Ukrainian songs, soloed the girls in the choir - they also performed the “Song of Vengeance”, which was written specially for the battery by Pavel Bezdaladny (the one who owns the famous lines “Donbass nobody put on his knees, and no one was given!” the poem "Donbas live! (Oath)" (1942 g.))). Nadia in a letter from the front asked him to compose for them - “girls gunners-gunners” - a march song. “... At least a few lines. This will be our own battery combat song - our salute. ” The poet responded and sent poems.
Rokossovsky concert like. And “wait for the deadline” Nadezhda did not have to. Inquiring why the soloist is dressed not in form - without a belt - and finding out what her fault was, the general was amused and canceled the punishment. He offered to go to the front ensemble, but did not insist when she refused.
And soldier stories are not fairy tales, and talent is a fact.
... I read what was written and became thoughtful. First, it’s somehow thoughtlessly about war. Completely soldier stories. And I didn’t mention about the wrecked American plane: at the very beginning of shuttle flights, they accepted him for a new German bomber ... They will also say a bike.
But stories are not fairy tales, not fiction. Everything is credible in these stories. I heard them more than once, not only from Nadezhda Baydachenko, but also from her front-line friends. Previously, they met from time to time (now, it seems, no one is left alive except Nadezhda Fedorovna). I sat by, listened to their memories, wrote them down. And the fact that the former anti-aircraft gunners did not like to talk about the horrors of the raids, about how friends were killed nearby - probably, naturally. They preferred to remember that light that brightened them up the terrible, terrible days of war. In which, as you know, not a woman's face.
Secondly, they might think that I idealize Nadezhda Fyodorovna. Like, and to that she has remarkable abilities, and to this ... But what to do, if that is so. Before entering the philological department, she had an acting career. Passion for theater began in childhood. For the first time having got on representation of the visiting den, already the next day has pleased neighboring children, having played the seen performance in the yard - with self-made dolls sewed from rags. Then she composed stories and texts on the topic of the day. It was at that time when the pioneers sang: "Ah, rank, rank, rank, fell brick, killed Chamberlain, wept for Chiang Kai-shek" (The original text of the couplet was somewhat different. Peter Grigorenko in his memoirs (Only rats can be found in the underground). .. - New York: Detinets publishing house, 1981) recalls how, at the end of 20, “they bawled, though it made no sense, but it greatly lifted our spirit:“ Oh, rank-rank, the brick fell, killed Zhang Zuo Lin, Chiang Kai Shi cried. "This couplet was dedicated to a successful operation (which was long attributed to Japanese intelligence, and Now - Soviet) to eliminate the ruler of Manchuria, Zhang Zolin, who died in the explosion of the 4 train on June 1928.
This props for the puppet theater Nadia later received as a gift from Pavel Postysheva, when she went to Kharkov to the rally of winners of the All-Ukrainian competition of pioneer brigades for collecting spikelets. When harvesting grain (mowed not by combines, but by primitive “lobogreykami”), the collective farmers, following the mowers, gathered in sheaves only ears of corn on a long stem, on fields that were socialized as a result of collectivization. The prudent owner in the past, surely, would not leave a grain on the ground, but here the stubble was everywhere littered with spikelets. They did not know that famine was approaching, even though they would have collected it for themselves (this happened even before the notorious “law of the three ears of corn”). Then the movement to collect spikelets, supported by the authorities, appeared. A lot of grain was saved by the pioneers of Ukraine, and in the Bakhmut district the brigade of Nadya Baidachenko gathered the most.
However, we were distracted from the topic ... When the theater with its troupe opened in Stalino, the father got a pass-book for his daughter. She did not miss a single production, made friends with many actors. And what she saw on the stage, tried to repeat at school. She organized a theater group, where she was both a director and an actress. Played and Schiller, and beloved Hope operetta. And then they put on performances in Ukrainian classics. There was then a period of Ukrainization in the republic, when almost all Russian schools translated into Ukrainian. Russian-speaking Hope was fascinated by Ukrainian songs. Moreover, the voice, as they all assured, was beautiful. She played the piano well and danced.
Passion for the theater manifested itself in the army. In 1945, when the war was over, but they hadn’t been allowed to go home yet, Baidachenko organized a soldier’s theater. They played both Russian and Ukrainian plays.
It is clear that at home in the pre-war years, and on the battery, no one doubted that she would become an actress.
45 year Now you can organize a soldier’s theater. First left - Nadya // FROM THE FAMILY ARCHIVE OF THE BAYDACHEN
But after the war, neither the continuation of studies in philology, nor the theatrical and there was no question. His father had not yet been demobilized, and the younger brother Vadim, a participant in the battles for Stalingrad, was dying from front-line wounds in the hands of Nadezhda. I went to work - first in the regional library, then as an editor in a book and newspaper publishing house. Of course, I could not resist organizing amateur performances. Suddenly, their team was recognized as the best in the city.
And then the passion for art almost changed her life. They offered to work as director of the district Palace of Culture in Ivano-Frankivsk region. Already gathered on the road, as a directive came from the Central Committee to revive artistic initiative. It was ordered to organize it in all large teams, to report, to participate in competitions. The work of the regional committee will now be evaluated by achievements in this direction.
Local authorities grabbed his head. Who will do this? Whom to send to contests, so as not to hit the face in the dirt? .. No, we will not let go anywhere. The best amateur group of the city can not be lost! Urgently appoint Baidachenko as a senior amateur art inspector of the regional cultural education program.
Then a quarter of a century, from 1954 to 1979, Nadezhda Fyodorovna worked in the regional party archives.
I still think: if she left for Galicia, how would fate be? They sent another girl from Stalino there, and soon the news came: Bandera was killed by her ...
Knowing the character of Nadezhda, I am sure that, having assessed the situation there, she would have postponed artistic initiative and engaged in organizing defense for the time being and would have become a “hawk”, as the local fighters against terror of the Ounovs were then called. Especially since the example was about which everyone in the family knows. In the years of the civil war, the aunt — the father’s sister — was the chief of the district militia and on horseback, chasing gangs in the Izyum district with a revolver and a saber. I don’t know if a similar case is known on the territory of Ukraine, so that a woman would occupy a similar position then ...
Such a family was Baidachenko. Such people gave birth to our land.
* “Laugh, finish, share” - lines from “Song of Vengeance” to the verses of Paul the Merciless, which became the anthem of the anti-aircraft battalion, where the heroine of this essay served. Under the title of the poem, the poet pointed out: "Dedicated to Nadea Baydachenko."