Ivan Ivanovich Korchov

Order of the Red Banner nr. 223004 was awarded by Order of the commander of the Artillery of the 1st Belorussian Front of April 21, 1945 to the 27-year-old Major Ivan Ivanovich Korchov (Иван Иванович Корчев), a deputy battalion commander for political affairs in the 135th Mortar Regiment, 2nd Mortar Brigade, 6th Breakthrough Artillery Division of the Reserve of the High Command, 1st Belorussian Front.

Promotions

Date

Junior Political Officer

June 2, 1941

Political Officer

August 8, 1941

Senior Political Officer

October 28, 1942

Captain

November 28, 1942

Major

December 16, 1944

Lieutenant Colonel

April 27, 1951

Ivan Ivanovich Korchov was born on October 6, 1917 in the village of Shkudim, Sosnovoborsk Raion, Penza Oblast, Russia. He graduated from high school in 1932, finished medical school in 1935, and then worked as a medical assistant. He later served as the manager of the Public Health Section of the Stavropol Raion (in the Kuibyshev Oblast) until he joined the Red Army on September 1, 1939, aged 21.

Korchov was allocated to the artillery, being attached as a cadet to the 62nd Artillery Regiment on the western Russian borders. Shortly afterward he was assigned to the 497th Howitzer Artillery Regiment as a gun commander and political officer, with which he underwent his baptism of fire in December 1939, during the Winter War against the Fins. He served on the Finnish peninsula until the end of the war in March 1940, after which he enrolled at Molotov Military-Political School in Smolensk. He graduated in May 1941 and was promoted to Junior Political Officer (equivalent to a two-star Army Lieutenant).

Korchov was appointed as the commissar of a howitzer battery and later a howitzer battalion. In August 1941, now a Political Officer (equivalent to a Senior Lieutenant), he was slightly wounded during the fighting near the Byelorussian city of Mogilyov. He was wounded again in November 1941, and for a third time, this time severely, in January 1942 near Vyazma. By late 1942 he was back at the front line, now as a Captain in command of Medical Train nr. 1048. In 1943 he was appointed deputy battalion commander and battalion commissar in the 135th Mortar Regiment, which he would remain until the end of the war. Promoted to Major in February 1944, Korchov fought through Poland - taking part in the capture of Warsaw - toward Germany, where he would eventually fight near Berlin.

During the war Korchov had been awarded four orders and four medals. He stayed in Germany with the Soviet Occupational Forces, still a battalion commissar, but now back in a howitzer unit. By late 1947 he was back in the Soviet Union, and in 1950 he was transferred to the Far East, now appointed commissar of an antitank battalion. Korchov graduated from Marxism-Leninism University in 1950. He was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel in April 1951, but was never promoted beyond battalion commissar. Korchov was discharged on July 15, 1955, after almost 16 years of service. Lieutenant Colonel Korchov lived in the city of Yaroslavl with his wife, Valentina, and their two sons, Oleg and Nikolai.


Record card

Order booklet nr. A-667407

1. Last name: Korchov
2. First name and patronymic: Ivan Ivanovich
3. Military rank: Major
4. Sex: Male
5. Year of birth: 1917
6. Place of birth: Village of Shkudim, Sosnovoborsk Raion, Penza Oblast
7. Party membership (since which year): Member of the Communist Party since 1939
8. Education: Secondary
9. Nationality: Russian
10. Since which year in the Red Army: Since 1939
11. Place of service (name of unit) and position occupied at the time of the award: Deputy battalion commander for political affairs in the 2nd Mortar Brigade
12. Current place of service and position: Deputy battalion commander for political affairs in the 18th Howitzer Artillery Brigade
13. Home address of the awardee: Village of Shkudim, Sosnovoborsk Raion, Penza Oblast

14. Record of all awards received:

Name of the order or medal

Serial number

Number of the document

Ground of award

Order of the Red Star [citation]

270027

Temporary certificate nr. 1111388

Order of the commander of the Artillery of the Bryansk Front nr. 22 of September 10, 1943

Order of the Patriotic War, 2nd Class [citation]

182356

Temporary certificate nr. D-258364

Order of the commander of the Artillery of the 1st Belorussian Front nr. 0125 of September 22, 1944

Order of the Red Banner [citation]

223004

Temporary certificate nr. E-240086

Order of the commander of the Artillery of the 1st Belorussian Front nr. 0184 of April 21, 1945

Order of the Red Banner [citation]

260219

Temporary certificate nr. Zh-706065

Order of the commander of the Artillery of the 1st Belorussian Front nr. 0212 of June 4, 1945

Medal for the Victory over Germany in the Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945

Certificate nr. Zh-0230106

Decree of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR of May 9, 1945

Signature of the awardee: [signed]

I confirm the correctness of the data and the signature of the awardee:

Acting commander of the 18th Howitzer Artillery Brigade
Colonel [signed] /Belousov/
December 4, 1946


Award sheet [for his Red Star]

1. Last name, first name and patronymic: Korchov, Ivan Ivanovich
2. Rank: Captain
3. Position and unit: Deputy commander for political affairs of the 1st Battalion of the 135th Mortar Regiment, 2nd Mortar Brigade, 6th Artillery Division of the Reserve of the High Command
Nominated for: Order of the Red Star
4. Year of birth: 1917
5. Nationality: Russian
6. Party affiliation: Member of the Communist Party
7. Participation in the Civil War and the subsequent combat actions to defend the USSR (where and when): No
8. Wounds and contusions received during the Patriotic War: Wounded twice
9. Since which year in the Red Army: Since 1939
10. Drafted by which military commissariat: Military Commissariat of the Sosnovoborsk Raion, Penza Oblast
11. Awards received previously: None
12. Permanent home address (of the prospective awardee or his family): ______________

Short, concrete description of personal combat feat or merits:

Serving as deputy battalion commander for political affairs, comrade Korchov managed to unify his soldiers and officers in order for them to accomplish their combat missions, aimed at defeating the German occupiers.

The frame of mind of the soldiers and officers is vigorous and healthy. During the offensive near the villages of Dudino and Zhilkovo between July 11 and 14, 1943, the battalion destroyed up to 45 enemy trucks with ammunition and troops, 7 mortar batteries, 18 machine gun nests, and 2 antitank rifles, and killed up to 150 soldiers and officers.

On July 14, 1943, under the leadership of comrade Korchov, the battalion was the first to open fire at a concentration of enemy vehicles and tanks near the village of Kholmishchi. As a result of the battalion's accurate fire, all enemy crews were killed or dispersed. The enemy left 3-4 light tanks, a few of which had been knocked out.

On July 15, 1943, during fighting to seize the village of Kholmishchi, the battalion killed up to 100 enemy soldiers and officers, took 30 soldiers prisoner, which contributed to the battalion's success in breaking through the enemy defenses.

Since the first days of the Patriotic War comrade Korchov showed himself a brave and bold commander, not knowing fear in war. In 1942 comrade Korchov was wounded twice.

Commander of the 135th Mortar Regiment
Major [signed] /Alekseyev/

Chief of staff of the 135th Mortar Regiment
Major [signed] /Smirnov/
July 31, 1943


Award sheet [for his OPW2]

1. Last name, first name and patronymic: Korchov, Ivan Ivanovich
2. Military rank: Captain
3. Position and unit: Deputy battalion commander for political affairs in the 135th Mortar Regiment, 2nd Red Banner Mortar Brigade, 6th Mozyrsk Red Banner Artillery Division of the Reserve of the High Command
Nominated for: Order of the Patriotic War, 2nd Class
4. Year of birth: 1917
5. Nationality: Russian
6. Party affiliation: Member of the Communist Party since 1939, party membership booklet nr. 4558155
7. Participation in the Civil War and the subsequent combat actions to defend the USSR (where, when): In the Patriotic War since June 23, 1941: on the Western Front from June 1941 through July 1943, on the Bryansk Front from July 1943 through September 1943, and on the Belorussian Front since January 1944
8. Wounds and contusions received during the Patriotic War: Wounded on February 15, 1942
9. Since which year in the Red Army: Since September 1939
10. Drafted by which military commissariat: Military Commissariat of the Stavropol Raion, Kuibyshev Oblast
11. Awards received previously: Order of the Red Star by Order of the Bryansk Front nr. 22 of September 10, 1943
12. Permanent home address (of the prospective awardee or his family): ______________

Short, concrete description of his combat feat or merits:

Since the moment the battalion was formed comrade Korchov has been serving in the regiment. Since this moment he has shown himself a professional, sophisticated, politically well developed, and brave frontline commander. On July 4, 1944 the division actively occupied defensive positions near Kovel. Comrade Korchov directed the Party and Komsomol organisation to carry out the commander's orders and mobilized the men to organize an honest defense. Scouts thoroughly studied the enemy front line and detected the enemy firing positions. During the offensive the party-political activities continued uninterruptedly. Just during the offensive, between July 5 and August 25, 1944, 26 people were accepted into the Party. All young adults of Komsomol age were made members of the Komsomol. The Komsomol organization now numbers 52 people, and the Party organization 110 people. As a result of the day-to-day party-political activities, the communists and other men displayed examples of bravery in combat. Near the village of Gorodelets, during the breakthrough of the enemy front line and the the deep German line of defense between July 5 and 8, 1944, the battalion destroyed 3 81.4-mm and 2 120-mm mortar batteries and 9 machine-gun positions, and killed 150 soldiers.

Near Paryduby the battalion destroyed 4 enemy 81.4-mm and 3 120-mm mortar batteries and 10 machine-gun positions and killed up to 200 soldiers and officers. During the fighting on the bridgehead on the left shore of the Vistula River between August 19 and 28, 1944 the battalion destroyed 14 enemy machine-gun positions, 4 81.4-mm and 5 120-mm mortar batteries, and 2 antitank guns, knocked out 1 tank, and killed up to 18 soldiers and officers.

On August 27, 1944, near the village of Khatkovska Volya on the right shore of the Radomka River, large enemy forces counterattacked and put pressure on our infantry. While shouting "Ura", "For the motherland", and "For Stalin", the communists of the battalion's headquarters platoons threw themselves into battle. The enemy was hurled back, as a result of which the German attack foundered and the initial situation at the front line of the battalion that was being supported was restored by the communist mortar troops. During the fighting 145 men of the battalion were awarded orders and medals. Comrade Korchov is a strong-willed commander and political officer, capable of taking initiatives. He is always present among the combat formations, together with his soldiers. He can always be seen where the combat situation is the most difficult. In my opinion comrade Korchov deserves the Order of the Patriotic War, 2nd Class.

Commander of the 135th Mortar Regiment
Lieutenant Colonel [signed] /Vasilyev/
August 31, 1944


Award sheet [for his first Red Banner]

1. Last name, first name and patronymic: Korchov, Ivan Ivanovich
2. Rank: Major
3. Position and unit: Deputy battalion commander for political affairs in the 135th Mortar Regiment, 2nd Red Banner Mortar Brigade, 6th Mozyrsk Red Banner Breaktrough Artillery Division of the Reserve of the High Command
Nominated for: Order of Lenin
4. Year of birth: 1917
5. Nationality: Russian
6. Party affiliation: Member of the Communist Party since 1939, party membership booklet nr. 4558155
7. Participation in the Civil War and the subsequent combat actions to defend of the USSR (where and when): In the Patriotic War since July 27, 1941: on the Western Front from July 1941 through November 1941, on the Bryansk Front from June 1943 through September 1943, and on the Belorussian Front since January 1944
8. Wounds and contusions received during the Patriotic War: Wounded on August 15, 1941 and wounded on November 25, 1941
9. Since which year in the Red Army: Since September 5, 1939
10. Drafted by which military commissariat: Military Commissariat of the Sosnovoborsk Raion, Penza Oblast
11. Awards received previously: Order of the Patriotic War, 2nd Class by Order of the commander of the Artillery of the 1st Belorussian Front nr. 0125 of September 22, 1944 and Order of the Red Star by Order of the commander of the Artillery of the Bryansk Front nr. 22 of September 10, 1943
12. Permanent home address (of the prospective awardee or his family): Village of Shkudim, Sosnovoborsk Raion, Penza Oblast. Father: Ivan Yakovlevich Korchov

Short, concrete description of his combat feat or merits:

On March 11, 1945, near the village of Lüchenthin, 1 kilometer south of the Baltic coast, a group of German infantrymen, numbering up to 2000 men, penetrated our infantry lines and broke through to the battalion's combat formations. The deputy battalion commander for political affairs, Major Korchov, was located at one of the firing positions and prepared the men for repelling the German infantry attack with their personaly weapons and grenades.

By 10:00 o'clock on March 11, 1945, forward observers, sent ahead by comrade Korchov, opened fire at the attacking Germans and reported to the firing positions that large German forces were located at a distance of 400 meters.

Together with Major Gavrilov, comrade Korchov ordered the gun layers to fire their base charges on direct lay, and the others to prepare themselves for repelling the attack with their personal weapons. When the Germans were at a distance of 100 metres, comrade Korchov led his soldiers in an attack, after having shot 10 German soldiers with his submachine gun and having killed five Germans with a grenade thrown well aimed into a group of enemy soldiers. The enemy counterattack was repelled. Up to 80 enemy soldiers and officers were killed. After 10 minutes a new group of Germans of up to 700 men from the Junker Berlin Naval Aviation School broke through to the battalion's firing positions. Major comrade Korchov arose with his entire stature from the entrenchment, and with a voice full of willpower and confidence he shouted: "Comrades, not a step back! We might die, but we will not retreat!" The soldiers, inspired by comrade Korchov's brave example, engaged the enemy in hand-to-hand combat, killing 92 Germans. During this battle comrade Korchov personally killed 6 German soldiers and 1 officer.

On March 12, 1945, after having replenished bullets and grenades, comrade Korchov organized a few companies out of his batteries and started an assault on the enemy firing positions. He drove the Germans out of the village of Lüchenthin and went to the Baltic coast, thus restoring the initial situation.

For the personal bravery he displayed while organizing a strong defense, and for training his men to act fearlessly, comrade Korchov deserves the Order of Lenin.

Deputy commander for political affairs of the 135th Mortar Regiment
Major [signed] /Marchenko/
March 19, 1945


Award sheet [for his second Red Banner]

1. Last name, first name and patronymic: Korchov, Ivan Ivanovich
2. Rank: Major
3. Position and unit: Deputy battalion commander for political affairs in the 135th Mortar Regiment, 2nd Red Banner Mortar Brigade, 6th Mozyrsk Order of Lenin Red Banner Breaktrough Artillery Division of the Reserve of the High Command
Nominated for: Order of the Red Banner
4. Year of birth: 1917
5. Nationality: Russian
6. Party affiliation: Member of the Communist Party since 1939, party membership booklet nr. 4558155
7. Participation in the Civil War and the subsequent combat actions to defend the USSR (where and when): In the Patriotic War since June 28, 1941: on the Western Front from June 1941 through November 1941, on the Bryansk Front from June 1943 through September 1943, and on the Belorussian Front since January 1944
8. Wounds and contusions received during the Patriotic War: Wounded on August 15, 1941 and wounded on November 25, 1941
9. Since which year in the Red Army: Since September 15, 1939
10. Drafted by which military commissariat: Military Commissariat of the Sosnovoborsk Raion, Penza Oblast
11. Awards received previously: Order of the Red Star by Order of the Bryansk Front nr. 22 of September 10, 1943; Order of the Patriotic War, 2nd Class by Order of the commander of the Artillery of the 1st Belorussian Front nr. 0125 of September 22, 1944; and Order of the Red Banner by Order nr. 0184 of April 21, 1945
12. Permanent home address (of the prospective awardee or his family): ______________

Short, concrete description of his combat feat or merits:

Serving as the deputy battalion commander for political affairs, comrade Korchov showed how to efficiently and capably organize the party-political activities in combat.

During the fighting on the western bank of the Oder River and on the approaches to Berlin, comrade Korchov was present among the combat formations the entire time, where he not only taught the men how to better execute a their tasks, but very often helped junior officers, including the chief of staff, organize the fighting as well.

In battle the communists and Komsomol members show examplary bravery, courage and audacity. Just between April 16 and 24, 15 people were nominated for and awarded orders and medals of the Soviet Union.

Comrade Korchov devotes a lot of attention to the growth of the Party organization and the Komsomol. During the latest battle 3 people were accepted into the Party. In combat comrade Korchov displays examples of courage and bravery, for instance when he transported a mortar across the Oder River on April 13 in a boat under enemy fire and crossed the other mortars on a ferry craft. He personally took boats with ammunition across the Oder River and oversaw crossings. Throughout the fighting the battalion was supplied with fuel and ammunition, which allowed for the infantry possess artillery support uninterruptedly. On April 25 he personally led the battalion to the Khovel Lake and despite heavy rifle, machine-gun, and artillery fire he enabled the advance of 601st Rifle Regiment of the 82nd Rifle Division. He devotes a lot of attention to the communications, despite the fact that the battalion lacks a chief of signals. He teaches the scouts how to locate enemy targets and how to suppress them. For example, during the fighting the scouts located 13 machine-gun positions, which were subsequently suppressed and destroyed by mortar fire. Thanks to the well-organized training of the men, they are informed in a timely manner about the situation at the various fronts. He is always acquainted with the Sovinformburo communiqués and the reports of the front's Military Council. Every day he conveys the latest news to the soldiers, non-commissioned officers and officers. Regardless of the combat conditions, three hot meals a day are provided, and there are regular opportunities for personal hygiene.

As a result of his activities to educate the men, the battalion is able to carry out its assigned missions successfully.

Comrade Korchov deserves to be awarded the Order of the Red Banner.

Deputy commander for political affairs of the 135th Mortar Regiment
Major [signed] /Gavrilov/
April 27, 1945



Lieutenant Colonel Ivan Ivanovich Korchov


Order of the Red Banner nr. 223004, obverse and reverse



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