Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Nadezhda Popova, 1921-2013

Another historical detail I did not previously know:
Nadezhda Popova, a Soviet aviator who became one of the most celebrated of the so-called “Night Witches,” female military pilots who terrorized the Nazi enemy with their nocturnal air raids during World War II, died July 8. She was 91.
Ms. Popova was among the first female pilots to volunteer for service in the Soviet military during World War II and became a squadron commander in her swashbuckling all-female regiment. She flew 852 combat missions — including 18 during one night — and was honored as a Hero of the Soviet Union, one of the nation’s highest decorations.
The pilots achieved a degree of surprise by shutting down their engines in the last stages of their bomb runs; the Germans heard only the hiss of the air flowing across their wings and, likening the sound to that of a broomstick in flight, referred to the women as Night Witches.
Godspeed, Commander Popova.


Women also flew for the United States during WWII.  Not in combat like the Night Witches but as WASPs.   

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Anonymous Chloe said...


12:02 AM  

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