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The centenary of the Russian test pilot, the Hero of the Soviet Union Sergei Anokhin

1 April 1910

Colonel Sergei Nikolaevich Anokhin, the Honored test pilot of the USSR, the Hero of the Soviet Union, the laureate of the State Prize, the Honored master of gliding sports of the USSR was born On March 19 (April 1), 1910 in Moscow.

Having graduated from school Sergei Nikolaevich had worked for some time as a worker at the railway, then as a driver and conductor in Bakhmetevsky Bus Garage.

In 1930 Anokhin finished the Gliding School of Moscow and in 1931 graduated from the Higher Glider School in Koktebel having received a qualification which allowed him to pilot all types of airframes. In 1932 he finished the Central Air School in Tushino village and in 1933 – the Higher Parachute School.

On September 1, 1933 during the airframes competition in Koktebel Anokhin was the first one to round the Kara Dag Mountain on glider. On September 15 the same year he set the all-Union record of the flight length on a single glide: 15 hours 47 minutes. In October of 1934 Anokhin carried out a very dangerous experiment of testing a ‘Rot-Front 1’ glider which had to be destroyed deliberately during the flight.

During the Great Patriotic War Anokhin was in command of a glider squadron on Kalinin front as a part of airborne troops. He effectuated the repeated flights on cargo gliders to the enemy’s rear and personally carried out the tests of the airborne crafts of special purpose and of parachutes of the new system.

In 1943 Anokhin was sent to the M. M. Gromov Air-research Institute to conduct the test work. During his flight activity he participated in testing of about 200 types of gliders and aircrafts.

On May 17, 1945 during the control test for durability of Yak-3 airplane Sergei Nikolaevich was seriously wounded and lost one eye. However after the rehabilitation he returned to the test flight work in December of 1945.

On February 3, 1953 S. N. Anokhin was given the title of the Hero of the Soviet Union under the decree of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR. On February 17, 1959 he became the first holder of the decoration ‘The Honored test pilot of the USSR’.

In April of 1964 Anokhin was assigned the Head of the test flight division of the S. P. Korolev design department. For a long period of time he was in charge of the civil cosmonauts’ training and was in command of the cosmonauts’ detachment of the Central design department of experimental machinery construction.

Besides the honorary title of the Hero of the Soviet Union Sergei Anokhin was awarded with three orders of Lenin, two orders of the Red Banner, three orders of the Patriotic War of the 1st class, the order of the Red Star, the medals ‘For the military service’, ‘To the Patriotic War partisan’ of the 1st class, ‘For the defense of Moscow’, ‘For the victory over Germany in the Great Patriotic War of 1941–1945’, etc.

Sergei Nikolaevich Anokhin died on April 15, 1986 and was buried at the Novodevichy Cemetery in Moscow.

Lit.: Аграновский А. Открытые глаза. М., 1963. Гл. 13; То же [Электронный ресурс]. URL:; В воздухе Анохин! // Завтра. 2000. 6 июня. № 23(340); Васин В. П., Симонов А. А. Испытатели ЛИИ. Жуковский, 2011; Гофман Г. Б. Крылатая семья. М., 1965; Симонов А. А. Заслуженные испытатели СССР. М., 2009; Щербаков А. А. Лётчики, самолёты, испытания. М., 1998.

From the Presidential library materials:

The Memory of the Great Victory: collection.