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    The names of German top tank aces are well known. Less known, if at all, are the names of the Soviet tankers, which bravely fought and mostly died in heavy but unknown battles of the war. In most of the cases all what remained of them were smoking ruins of German and their own tanks. Their fate remained unknown.
Some tankers became known. Perhaps most known is Lieutenant Dmitriy Lavrinenko, who scored 52 victories in 28 engagements before he was killed defending Moscow in 1941 while serving in the division under command of General Panfilov.
Dmitriy Lavrinenko > was born in 1914 in a small village near Krasnodar. Probably, the name of the village, Besstrashnaya/Fearless, reflected in Dmitriy. Totaling 52 kills, Lavrinenko started his count under Orel and Mzensk. 3 tanks were killed under him in process. In October of 1941 his T-34 destroyed 16 German tanks in a single combat.
Lavrinenko was honored the Hero of the Soviet Union in 1985 (!).

Dashinskiy (left) posing with his KV. On 3 October 1942 Dashinskiy destroyed 6 tanks, 18 guns, 6 mortars and a few dozens of infantry in the battle in the Don area.

Zinovij Kolobanov in his KV claimed a record on 19 August 1941 under Leningrad by destroying in 3 hours combat 22 German tanks. KV withstood 135 hits.

On 13 July 1943 Semen Konovalov in his KV destroyed under Rostov/Don 16 tanks, 2 armored cars, 8 trucks.

To be continued

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