On veterans a rocket, a resident of the Red Selo near St. Petersburg Yuri Trushechkin today - alas, with a delay of almost half a century - tell legends. He was in a rocket calculation, destroyed in the skies over Vietnam, the American plane, piloted by the future US presidential candidate John McCain, and even took as a trophy of his personal documents.
Soldiers in civilian clothes
- Here are our guys from the calculation, - shows me a picture Yuri Petrovich.
On an old photo of several people in civilian clothes, but neat short haircuts give them war. When the mobile anti-aircraft missile systems S-75 first appeared in Vietnam, the first two years of fighting calculations were completely Soviet. Soon the brothers-in-arms have taken techniques from our experts and themselves sat at desks missile. Officers of the Soviet Union has sent them to the safety net.
At S-75 combat crew consisted of about 80 persons of Vietnamese and Russian 7.
- Sent to Vietnam those who have had the experience of combat missile launches at the site, well known technique - the veteran recollects. - command dials "raznoperaya" - coordinator technician, tweeter ... I was a guidance officer.
- Our task - he continues his story - was primarily setup technology. Besides - Troubleshooting, Vietnamese training exercise. And most importantly - we have complete control over the operation of the complex. - And where were you during the shooting?
- For remote I sat Vietnamese. I was next. All combat work carried our brothers in arms. The task consisted of advisers to insure their actions.
We continue to view the pictures.
- And here and we Americans were - gave me Yury picture in which - warped Soviet rocket. - This was dealt a missile attack on the column.
- And often fall under the bombing?
- Sometimes ... We, however, did not go with columns. Vietnamese anti-aircraft missile battalions completely not unfolded. Divisions were almost always on the move, because they are pinpointing satellites.
"The flag beggar" John McCain
Rocketeer himself can not see the results of launches rockets flew at 25-30 kilometers. And this plane was shot down in a way that fell 5-6 kilometers from the position.
- The pilot ejected, - says Trushechkin - and we saw him coming down on the "wing" - a new form at the time of the parachute. It took the Vietnamese capture group.
Different sources claim that the American stabbed with bayonets, beaten. Here is what was written, for example, one newspaper: "John McCain - the future senator - as part of his squadron bombed facilities in North Vietnam. In October 1967, during the next combat mission, breaks her last flight in a military career - his knock Vietnamese air defense. The pilot at the same time to eject and fell into the lake. From there he was, with multiple injuries and fractures of the extremities, Vietnamese soldiers caught and sent to die in prison in Hanoi, has not had any medical care. " - It was not a lake, - says Yuri Trushechkin - but rather a swamp, break limbs in it is difficult. The road on which were a prisoner, took place not far from us. I saw the pilot was alone, so no injuries and there was no fracture. With just pulled off his coveralls. American escorted several Vietnamese soldiers.
After some time the translator brought to position documents and flight helmet. The helmet is very valued glass, which was dark, depending on the intensity of the light. Dragged even the so-called "poor flag" - a label that contains multiple languages has been written, that, say, "I am an American citizen, suffered a disaster, please help ..." She was every soldier and a US Army officer.
Among the things there was a logbook - two stacked cardboard in half. It felt pen were written first and last name: John Sidney McCain. I opened it - there is metered graphs in which were recorded the date of inspection of the parachute. I took the book as a souvenir. Then during the many journeys she lost ...
Why am I so well remember the name of a downed American? Yes, because this flight was the only book in this American document that I have ever held in my hands.
In Hanoi, I saw, as it was called, "hits the poor." More than three hundred dressed in identical pajamas brown Americans were protected through the streets of the Vietnamese capital. Next to me was an embassy employee, who gave the names and the names of the prisoners. Then I heard again the name of John McCain.
There is no doubt
Many years later, in 1986, Trushechkin vaguely caught on television reported that a John McCain is running for the Arizona State Senate. And when told that his plane was shot down in Vietnam by a Soviet rocket, and he was in captivity - all doubts were dispelled. During the recent election campaign in the United States veteran defense forces once again recalled his Vietnamese victory ...
- And many of them do it? - I interested in the interlocutor.
- In my personal case appear 5 US aircraft destroyed, not counting the "drones", I was awarded the Order of the Red Star. Vietnamese relationship to those skilled in the USSR was excellent. The peasants carried us fish, chicken, fruits, - says Yuri Petrovich - though they were starving. We, in turn, gave them canned meat, condensed milk, sweets, if there were. Communicated through interpreters. Even had a special team that we have served: guarded, cooked food, even struggling with insects, there is an incredible amount.