Who such Mikhail Vodopyanov? The beginning of a big way ofin the middle of 60 - x years my now deceased friend, the writer and the journalist Anatoly Elkin, suggested to walk with it to the country. He agreed about a meeting with the legendary polar pilot Mikhail Vodopyanov, the gentleman of the Gold Star of the Hero of the Soviet Union No. 6. Vodopyanov was among the first seven people awarded with the highest award in the USSR. Knowing about my interest in history of the Soviet aircraft, Roofing felt also called me with himself.
- the Following station - “Kupavna“, - sounded on train radio.
We left to the lake and began to bypass it on the left side. If to go to the right, then you will get to the whole city of the small houses standing on 6 hundred parts. Somewhere there in depth there is also our wheelbarrow. And on other coast the real palaces - “general“ dachas as they were called on our right side were located. I few times had to be there, however, not on foot, and by swimming therefore then I did without survey of local sights.
There was excellent autumn weather, was still warm, but the foliage already almost absolutely flew and the wood ceased to conceal sounds. Blows of the axe were from a distance distributed, someone prepared firewood for the winter.
The high coast of the lake hid from us the village of Biserovo which received the name from the lake of the same name, one of the most beautiful places of Moscow area. Not for nothing this area is nicknamed Kupavna for a long time.
Vodopyanov`s house was in the center of the first row, in several tens meters above water level. Having approached closer, we saw the dense large gray-haired man, the dispute chopping firewood. Having noticed us, it put the axe aside and threw with a shabby old leather jacket shoulders. Handshake of his hand was very strong, considerable force was felt at once.
My friend, collecting at that time materials for the next book, addressed Mikhail Vasilyevich as to one of recognized experts on the Polar region. We drank tea in a garden, and so far they specified some trifles of the taken place events long ago, I tried to understand what is available such special in an open courageous face of the host what ordinary people are deprived. In other words, what is expressed by a human face, made for the life of feats so many that they would be enough for many heroes, but could find nothing of that kind special.
Mikhail in the most poor man`s country family at the turn of centuries in the village Big of the Lipetsk County of the Tambov province was born Studyonki. Now this village disappeared from maps, absorbed its expanded regional center.
By February, 1918 Mikhail was slightly more than eighteen years old, it was the illiterate fellow who was not able neither to read, nor to write, but with a ten-year working experience of the moving man on animal-drawn a supply.
Literally one minute his life changed. He saw a surprising man-made bird over the head and lost rest, so he wanted to rise in the sky by the similar flying ship. At that time in Lipetsk there was an airfield in which the aviation division “Ilya Muromets“ was deployed. Mikhail managed to persuade the airfield administration to hire it. It was familiar business, it carried everything on the same a supply aviation fuel and ammunition. Exactly from now on there is a counting of its army experience.
To planes of strangers did not admit therefore Mikhail all free time turned among the drivers serving a division. Soon he seized the diploma and learned to understand so well automobile motors that he was appointed the assistant to the driver in the beginning, and since 1921 - the driver.
The division was thrown from the front on the front. Vodopyanov had to participate in fights both against Kolchak, and against Wrangel. Soon war ended, and the got demobilize driver arrived to Moscow where got a job the loader, at the same time continuing to study persistently. In 1925 it began to work as the aviation mechanic, and soon and the flight mechanic. The dream to rise in air was executed, but appeared new - to drive planes.
In 1928 Vodopyanov graduates from flight school “Dobroleta“, and then and Moscow letno - technical school. There were to it at that time nearly thirty years, any more not the boy. Time was difficult, the people able to steer planes and wishing to do it, fully, and here with planes there was a trouble, they chronically were not enough. It is more surprising by that that our hero who just received the certificate of the pilot 3 classes was employed in the Dobrolet company, nowadays it is called “Aeroflot“. The new stage in Vodopyanov`s life began.
In the country attempts to create agricultural chemistry become. At that time nobody so yet called a small squadron on fight against a locust and malarial mosquitoes in which as the flight mechanic, and then and the pilot, Mikhail worked. They had to work much to prove efficiency of the work, having flown at the same time about considerable territories of Kazakhstan and the North Caucasus.
Its dedicated work, a great skills, persistence and courage were estimated by the management of the company. And here charge to Vodopyanov new, very responsible and unusual task - to master a new route in difficult natural and climatic conditions. The most east region of the country - the island of Sakhalin - had no regular communication with the continent. There was a pressing need in its creation, fast and reliable, and nothing was better than aircraft.
But the domestic aviation industry only began to develop, to it had no time for passenger planes, it was necessary to strengthen defense capability of the country. It was decided to buy the plane abroad. Chose Junkers F 13. To the plane assigned board number to the USSR - 127. It it also became history of the Soviet aircraft.