#ARCTIC. #SIBERIA. THIS IS TAIMYR. May 9 holiday in Norilsk was not a spring day in terms of the weather: wind, snowfall, blizzard. But the participants of the Immortal Regiment march who gathered on Leninsky prospekt and those who came to pay tribute to the feat of the Soviet soldier were not stopped by either the snowstorm.
In the central place of the Victory Day celebration in Norilsk, the main words in honor of the Great Patriotic War veterans were said. There are not so many of them left who can come to the Victory Memorial and lay flowers at the Eternal Flame. Years go by, few living witnesses of the great Victory are left.
Today the youth takes over the memory watch. These are the ones who have to take now our word for the troubles brought by the war.
The parade column included not only the Norilsk garrison representatives, but also the units of law enforcement agencies, the National Guard, as well as the youth – Yunarmy (Young Army) members, among whom there was the girl’s unit.
The Immortal Regiment column becomes more and more crowded year by year. The historical memory among the people grows stronger, acquires even greater significance, going far beyond the borders of one state. Russians and Kazakhs, Belarusians and Dagestanis, Ukrainians and Georgians walked through the snowstorm along Leninsky prospect with photographs of their ancestors, who won freedom more than half a century ago. On the pillars one could see copies of old black-and-white photographs of soldiers in tunics, sailors in peakless caps, people in formal suits, Caucasian cloaks and Cossack hats. According to the decision to add participants in military conflicts of recent history to the lists of the Immortal Regiment, photographs of servicemen in modern uniforms flashed among veteran portraits.
The 1945 meters sports race was held on Leninsky prospekt. Field kitchens with soldiers’ buckwheat porridge with stew and tea were deployed on Komsomolskaya and Theater squares.
The holiday at the drama theater became a real folk festival with singing and dancing, since the blizzard ended, and the air acquired spring freshness and flavored with a little rain.
Now 20 veterans of the Great Patriotic War live in Norilsk: there are two direct participants, two more are former juvenile prisoners; eight home front workers; eight wives of deceased participants and disabled veterans of the Great Patriotic War.
To all those who defended our country during the Great Patriotic War at the front and in the rear, Nornickel provided material assistance.
In addition, the Charitable Programs Department of the Nornickel’s Polar Division created holiday food packages for each of the veterans. The company also presented the veterans with flowers and gifts, as well as a greeting card on the Victory Day on behalf of Nikolay Utkin, Nornickel senior vice president, the Norilsk Division head.
Text: Denis Kozhevnikov, Photos: Denis Kozhevnikov, Nikolay Shchipko