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Nikolay N. Kharitonov

Nikolay N. Kharitonov

Hero of the Soviet Union (1944), honoured test-pilot of the USSR (1970), colonel (1956).

Nikolay Kharitonov was born on January 8, 1922 in the village of Golodskoye which nowadays is in Peremyshlsky District of Kaluga region. He finished 7 classes of school and worked in the farming sector. Since 1938 Nikolay Kharitonov worked as an ironworker at the construction company of Tula region. In 1939 he graduated from Tula aero club.

Since December 1939 Nikolay Kharitonov was in the Red Army. In May 1941 he graduated from Taganrog Military aviation school for pilots. He served in combatant forces of the Air Force.

Nikolay Kharitonov was a participant of the Great Patriotic War: from June to August 1941 he was a pilot of the 204th bomber regiment (long-range bomber aviation). In 1942 he graduated from the 1st Highter school for pilots and navigators of the Long-Range Aviation. From July 1942 to May 1945 Nikolay Kharitonov was a pilot, the flight commander of the 748th (since August 1942 - of the 2nd Guards) long-range aviation air regiment. He took part in the Battle of Stalingrad and in the Battle of Kursk, in liberation of Belarus and in the Battle of Koenigsberg. He has performed 285 combat flights on DB-3, Il-4, B-25 "Mitchell" deep in enemy territory.

After the war Nikolay Kharitonov continued his service in the Long-Range Aviation. In 1947 he graduated from Ryazan Higher officer school of the Longe-Range Aviation. Nikolay Kharitonov was the commender of a regiment that was the first to switch to Tu-95 strategic bombers. After that he was the deputy commender of the heavy bomber air division. Since January 1958 he was reserved.

From February 1958 to September 1976 Nikolay Kharitonov was a test-pilot of Tupolev design bureau. He has lifted in the sky and carried out tests of Tu-104E (on September 22, 1962; the 2nd pilot) and Tu-154 (on October 3, 1968; the 2nd pilot) jet passenger planes. Nikolay Kharitonov has performed tests of Tu-95 and Tu-114 at high angles of attack (1960). He took part in tests of Tu-22, Tu-104, Tu-110, Tu-114, Tu-116 Tu-124, Tu-134 and their modifications.

In 1960 Nikolay Kharitonov established 8 world aviation records of speed on Tu-114 as the second pilot.

Nikolay Kharitonov lived in the city of Zhukovsky of the Moscow region, and during the last years of his life - in the city of Moscow. He worked at Tupolev design bureau as an engineer of its flight test complex. Nikolay Kharitonov died on May 26, 1991. He was buried at the Dolgoprudnenskoe cemetery, in Moscow.

Nikolay Kharitonov was awarded three Orders of Lenin (1943, 1944, 1955), two Orders of the Red Banner (1943, 1955), Order of Alexander Nevsky, two Orders of the Patriotic War of the 1st class (1944, 1985), Order of the Red Star (1955), the Order of Badge of Honor, medals.