of white smoke. By this time, Dzunkovska managed to expend
all of her UBT 12.7mm rounds. Below them, the river Kuban
appeared, which at the time represented the front line.
Before the German fighters turned back, they managed to
hit the second engine as well, and the Pe-2 quickly began to
lose altitude. Dolina managed a successful wheels-up landing,
during which the radio operator/gunner was injured, but still
managed to help the trapped Dzunkovska from the cockpit.
Shortly after the three-person crew cleared the aircraft, it
exploded. Dolina suffered some spinal injuries, but was able to
return to duty after several months.
The war continued on, and 125th gv. bap. continued on
in their combat duties. On June 26, 1944, Dolina and her crew
conduct a precision attack on a rail line at Orsa, at the moment
when a German train with freight cars loaded with ammunition
was present. The result was the annihilation of the train where
one by one, the cars exploded and left an inferno.
Well-known Petlyakov Pe-2, coded 89 and bearing the swallow artwork below the
cockpit. As a rule, this aircraft was flown by the 1st Flight, 125th gv bap CO Nadezda
Fedutenko, but was also flown by Maria Dolina.
On June 28, 1944, several missions were undertaken in
support of the Red Army against concentrations of enemy units
that were formed up at the village of Zembin and in support of
the river Berezin crossing. She also took part in the liberation
of the town of Borisova.
On August 18, 1945, Maria Dolina was awarded the Hero of
the Soviet Union medal for bravery displayed during the Second
World War. Four other members of the unit were awarded
in the same way: Guards Major Nadezda Fedutenko, Guards
Captain Klaudiya Fomichova, Guards Captain Antonina Zubkova
and Senior Lt. Galina Dzunkovska.
Furthermore, Dolina was twice awarded the Order of the Red
Banner, the Order of the Red Star, Bravery Medal, Medal of the
Defense of Stalingrad, Medal of the Defense of Kavkaz, and
the Medal of Victory Over Germany in the Great Patriotic War
1941-1945. Later, besides several commemorative medals ,she
The crew of Pe-2 dive bomber coded 76 of the 125th gv bap sharing
their experiences with ground crew after returning from a mission.
INFO Eduard - June 2019
Guards Captain Maria Dolina, photographed after having been awarded
the Hero of the Soviet Union Gold Star.
received another high-level commendation, that being the
Order of the Great Patriotic War, First Class.
After the end of the Second World War, she served
as Deputy Commander of the bomber regiment. She married
in 1946, and gave birth to two sons. In 1950, she went into
the Reserves and lived in Lithuania. In 1975, she became
an honorary member of the Normandie-Niemen, a fighter
unit of the French Air Force that was formed in the Second
World War as a Fighter Group of the Free French fighting Nazi
Germany. Her current, full designation is Regiment de chasse
2/30 Normandie-Niemen (Fighter Regiment 2/30 NormandieNiemen). In 1983, Maria Dolina moved to Kiev, where she
lived for the rest of her life. She died on March 3rd, 2010.
She was laid to rest in Kiev, at the Baykov Cemetery.
Order of the Great Patriotic War, 1st Class. Maria Dolina
received this award in 1985.