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Thursday, June 2, 2011

Russian Valley of the dead

Myasnoy Bor is a small village in the Novgorod region. In April of 1942, there was a battle taken away many lives of Russian soldiers. Later this place got a name of the “valley of death”. Nowadays active searching works are conducted in the area. More and more remains are found daily. So let’s follow a group of activists and explore this gloomy place.

At the headquarters coordinating a searching process the most interesting findings of the current season lie on a special table.
The view on the road from an all-terrain vehicle.
“Private Sorokin S.A. was found by the searchers of Tatarstan in 2006.” You can find such monuments at every 20 meters in the forest. It should be mentioned that only 1 out of 50 found soldiers is usually managed to be identified.
“The place of the death of a tanker, Merzlikin Vasily Ivanovich. 1921-1942. Found on the 6th of May in 1990.”
Searching is conducted with the help of a probe – a stick with a metal tip which is frequently stuck in the ground and which makes a specific sound when it finds something.
“The place of the death of a Red Army soldier from the Chelyabinsk region, Butorin Ivan Vasilyevich. 1906-1942. Found on the 19th of August in 2007.”
Found helmets are hung on the trees or put in a prominent position so that they won’t distract a metal detector anymore.
Some remains…
Power lines.
This is an excavation site. Some remains and vertebrae are already collected into a bag.
“Snow Troopers. Kazan”
All found soldiers are buried temporarily in a special place near the headquarters.
Then, on the eve of Victory Day, they are buried in mass graves located at Mysnoy Bor.
Vladimir Ivanov is one of the 15 veterans who fought in these places and currently living in Moscow. Only two of them were able to come to the meeting of the regiment hold at Gorky Park on the 9th of May.

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