Commemorates Russian Soldier
LIGURE, ITALY (RIA Novosti) — "Fedor Poletayev: Russian
Hero of Italian Resistance", is the name of a Novosti photograph
exposition which opened in Cantalupo Ligure, tiny town in the
North Italian highlands.
The show is
part of a nationwide Poletayev commemoration program on his 60th
death anniversary. The valiant soldier fought in the renowned
Battle of Moscow, 1941. Captured by the enemy during the following
year’s Don operation, he escaped from a POW camp in 1944 to join
a guerrilla detachment in Northern Italy. Fedor died a hero’s
death, February 2, 1945, to rescue his comrades-in-arms from an
impending encirclement in the vicinity of Cantalupo Ligure. One
of the few Soviet nationals to win the supreme Italian martial
award, Gold Medal for Military Merits, he was posthumously awarded
his native country’s highest martial title, Hero of the Soviet
A public rally
commemorated Poletayev and other Soviet heroes of the Italian
Resistance. It gathered at the town Sports Palace, which hosts
the exposition. Attending the event was Pier Ferdinando Casini,
President of the Chamber of Deputies, the Italian parliament’s
lower house. There were other guests of honor-governors of several
North Italian provinces, city mayors, and a delegation of the
Ryazan Region in Central Russia, Fedor Poletayev’s native land.
Leading the delegation was Georgi Shpak, regional governor. Fedor
Poletayev, Jr., the hero’s grandson, was the most welcome guest
more years are putting the grim days of World War II at an ever
greater distance from us. War veterans are passing away, yet their
memory rests evergreen. We live as long as we remember, runs an
old saying. It is right a thousand times. Those we are commemorating
live on in our memory. This exposition exemplifies our reverential
memory," said Alexei Meshkov, Russian Ambassador to Italy,
as he was opening the show.
was not an only Soviet soldier to fight nazisside by side with
Italian guerrillas. More than five thousand escaped Soviet POWs
had joined the Resistance. Four hundred of them died in action
to be interred in Italy, Pier Ferdinando Casini emphatically said.
Poletayev exposition is itinerant. It will appear in Piedmont’s
Alessandria and in Genoa within this month next to travel all
about the country from Liguria to Sicily.