Podpolkovnik Aleksandr Maksimovich Berkutov HSU
11 November 1911 – 26 January 1962
Aleksandr Berkutov was born in Novoy Mordovo on 11 November 1911.
Berkutov joined the Red Army in 1931 and initially served as gun commander in an artillery regiment before he, in 1933, was sent to Voroshilovgrad Military Aviation School of Pilots from which he graduated in 1935.
During his first time in the VVS he served in units in the Belarusian Military District.
He took part in the Khalkhin Gol conflict with Japan when he served between Juna and August 1939, flying Polikarpov I-153s in 56 IAP.
On 17 November 1939, he was decorated with the Order of the Red Banner.
Berkutov also took part in the Finnish-Soviet Winter War of 1939-1940, flying I-153s in 38 IAP.
Berkutov was posted to 84-A IAP in August 1942. At this time, this unit was still flying Polikarpov I-153s and entered combat against the German invaders on 11 December 1942. They were part of the Transcaucasian Front.
On 5 October 1942, he was shot down in combat but managed, wounded, to force-land his damaged fighter on friendly territory.
After treatment, he returned to his unit in1943.
On 19 October 1942, he was decorated with a second Order of the Red Banner.
The unit was taken of operations on 19 May 1943 to start to retrain on Bell P-39 Airacobras.
On 17 June 1943, 84-A IAP became a guard’s unit and was renamed to 101 GIAP.
He was decorated with the Order of the Patriotic War 2nd Class on 15 August 1943.
101 GIAP entered combat again on 22 October with their new Airacobras. The unit operated on the North-Caucasian Front.
On 22 February 1944, he was decorated with a third Order of the Red Banner.
He was decorated with the Order of the Patriotic War 1st Class on 21 May 1944.
On 2 August 1944, Berkutov was decorated with the Gold Star of the Hero of the Soviet Union (no. 4050) and the Order of Lenin.
At this time, he had taken part in 332 combat mission (including 125 ground attack missions) and 68 air combats.
Berkutov left 101 GIAP in December 1944 when he was posted to command 57 GIAP, which also was equipped with Airacobras and operated on the 2nd Belarusian Front. He took command of this unit on 6 January 1945 and remained in command until 31 December 1945
Berkutov ended the war with 5 biplane victories and a total of 16.
These had been claimed during 361 combat missions and taken part in 71 air combats.
He had also been decorated with the Order of the Red Star at an unknown date.
He was decorated with the Order of Aleksandr Nevskiy on 31 May 1945.
He continued to serve in the VVS after the war until he was placed in the reserve in 1946.
From 1947, he lived in Sochi.
Berkutov died on 26 January 1962.
|Kill no.||Date||Time||Number||Type||Result||Plane type||Serial no.||Locality||Unit|
|1||25/08/42||1||Bf 109||Destroyed||I-153||Dortuy||84-A IAP|
|2||01/09/42||1||Bf 109||Destroyed||I-153||Kizlyar||84-A IAP|
|3||02/09/42||1||Bf 109||Destroyed||I-153||N Voznesensk||84-A IAP|
|4||04/09/42||1||Bf 109||Destroyed||I-153||S Nizhniy Bekovich||84-A IAP|
|5||11/09/42||1||Bf 109||Destroyed||I-153||SW Gnadeburg||84-A IAP|
|6||10/01/44||1||Bf 109||Destroyed||Airacobra||N Kezy||101 GIAP|
|7||23/01/44||1||Bf 109||Destroyed||Airacobra||Aleksandrovka||101 GIAP|
|8||23/01/44||1||Bf 109||Destroyed||Airacobra||Aleksandrovka||101 GIAP|
|9||25/01/44||1||Bf 109||Destroyed||Airacobra||N Height 115.5 (Crimea)||101 GIAP|
|10||25/01/44||1||FW 190||Destroyed||Airacobra||Katerlez||101 GIAP|
|11||26/01/44||1||Ju 87||Destroyed||Airacobra||Kerch-2||101 GIAP|
|12||05/02/44||1||FW 190||Destroyed||Airacobra||Height 88.5 (Kerch area)||101 GIAP|
|13||05/02/44||1||FW 190||Destroyed||Airacobra||Height 88.5 (Kerch area)||101 GIAP|
|14||06/02/44||1||FW 190||Destroyed||Airacobra||Katerlez||101 GIAP|
|15||07/02/44||1||FW 190||Destroyed||Airacobra||W Aleksandrovka||101 GIAP|
|16||17/04/44||1||FW 190||Destroyed||Airacobra||S outskirts of Khersones airfield||101 GIAP|
Biplane victories: 5 destroyed.
TOTAL: 16 destroyed.
All aces of Stalin 1936-1953 – Mikhail Bykov, 2014
Soviet Aces 1936-1953
Soviet Fighter Pilots 1936-1953 - Mikhail Bykov