Aleksandr Bilykin

Aleksandr Bilykin

Fighter pilot.
Date of Birth: 11.09.1920
Country: Ukraine

  1. Biography of Alexander Bilyukin
  2. Early Life and Passion for Aviation
  3. Defending Leningrad
  4. Post-War Career

Biography of Alexander Bilyukin

Alexander Dmitrievich Bilyukin was born on September 11, 1920, in the village of Malye Vyazemy, now part of the Odintsovo district of the Moscow region, in a peasant family. He completed elementary school in the settlement of Zhavoronki. While studying at the FZU school at the Aviakhim plant in Moscow, he specialized in metalworking. He worked at the plant and studied at the aeroclub. He joined the Red Army in 1939. In 1940, he graduated from the Borisoglebsk Military Aviation School and was sent to the front at the start of the Great Patriotic War. By November 1944, Bilyukin became the commander of the 196th Fighter Aviation Regiment (324th Fighter Aviation Division, 7th Air Army, Karelian Front). He completed 418 combat missions, engaged in 35 aerial battles, personally shot down 22 enemy aircraft and 1 in a group. On November 2, 1944, he was awarded the title of Hero of the Soviet Union for his courage and military valor displayed in battles against the enemy.

Aleksandr Bilykin

After the war, Bilyukin continued to serve in the Soviet Air Force. He completed the Officer Training Courses in 1948 and successfully graduated from the Military Air Academy in 1957. From 1966, Colonel A.D. Bilyukin served in the reserves. He was awarded the Orders of Lenin, Red Banner, Alexander Nevsky, the Patriotic War 1st Class, and the Red Star (three times), as well as several medals. He passed away on October 24, 1966, and was buried in Moscow.

Aleksandr Bilykin

Early Life and Passion for Aviation

Alexander Bilyukin was born in the village of Malye Vyazemy on September 11, 1920, into a family of a railroad worker. His passion for aviation began at a young age when a plane made an emergency landing in the village. The plane flew so low that it almost hit the chimney of the house. This experience sparked the curiosity and admiration of young Bilyukin, and he dreamt of one day becoming a pilot himself. Along with his friend, Sergey Morozov, Bilyukin would spend hours building model airplanes and fantasizing about flying.

Aleksandr Bilykin

In 1936, after completing the 7th grade, Bilyukin enrolled in the FZU school at the Moscow Aviation Plant named after Aviakhim. At the same time, he joined the aeroclub in the Leningrad district of the capital, taking his first steps in aviation. In 1939, he graduated from the V.P. Chkalov Military School of Pilots and was assigned to the Leningrad Military District. Serving in the Leningrad district was not only honorable but also brought great responsibility. The military units and formations in the district had a proud history dating back to the heroic defense of Petrograd during the October Revolution. The aviation units of the Red Army had already established their own heroic stories, fighting against Japanese invaders at Lake Khasan and the Khalkhin Gol River and participating in the Spanish Civil War. Bilyukin aimed to follow in the footsteps of these renowned aviators.

Aleksandr Bilykin

Defending Leningrad

When the Great Patriotic War began, Alexander Bilyukin found himself defending the skies above his homeland, the skies of Leningrad. He had the opportunity to learn from experienced pilots and took every opportunity to improve his skills. As the Soviet Air Force started to receive the new MiG-3 fighter aircraft, Bilyukin and his comrades eagerly embraced this advanced machine, striving to master its capabilities. His determination to excel in his craft earned him the nickname "Young God" among his superiors.

In the early months of the war, Bilyukin's combat achievements were modest, as he focused on protecting his wingman and covering his commanding officer. However, during one aerial battle, his plane was set on fire, and he had to parachute to safety. Despite being injured, Bilyukin refused to take leave from the front and quickly returned to the skies, continuing to protect his city and the "Road of Life" – the ice road across Lake Ladoga that supplied the besieged Leningrad. He played a crucial role in the breakthrough and lifting of the blockade of Leningrad.

As the war progressed, Bilyukin's skills as a fighter pilot continued to grow. In August 1943, he achieved his most successful day, shooting down four enemy aircraft. His combat prowess was recognized in the military newspaper "Red Star," which published an article titled "Master of Aerial Attacks" dedicated to Bilyukin's feats.

Throughout the war, Bilyukin defended Leningrad and participated in numerous aerial battles. He completed a total of 430 successful combat missions, flying different aircraft such as the I-16, Yakovlev fighters, and the Bell P-39 Airacobra. He personally shot down 22 enemy aircraft and one in a group. For his bravery, Bilyukin received the Order of Alexander Nevsky.

Post-War Career

After the defeat of the German forces near Leningrad, Bilyukin's 196th Fighter Aviation Regiment, commanded by renowned ace Andrey Vasilyevich Chirkov, was transferred to the Karelian Front. Continuing his career as a pilot, Bilyukin flew modern aircraft and demonstrated his exceptional skills in aerial parades in Moscow, captivating thousands of spectators and instilling a sense of pride in the country and its armed forces.

In recognition of his achievements, a memorial plaque was installed on the facade of the school building in Zhavoronki, where Bilyukin studied as a child. Today, his legacy and the memory of his heroic service are preserved in the annals of Soviet aviation history.