#ARCTIC. #SIBERIA. THIS IS TAIMYR. In 1974, construction of two houses – No. 6 and No. 8 – of a new, still unnamed passage, which connected Begichev street with Hantayskaya Street, was underway in Norilsk.
At first, it was called Severny, after its location on the Norilsk map. But at the same time, a competition was announced: the townspeople were asked to think of a name for that passage. As a result, it was named after a Norilsk resident, a policeman Vasily Mikhailichenko who died at work.
Lieutenant Vasily Mikhailichenko worked in Norilsk as a district inspector. On November 12, 1971, he was asked to come out of vacation a few days earlier. He took over the night duty as an assistant on duty.
At 22.30 a call was received to 44 Komsomolskaya street: ‘An armed man wounded another man’. Mikhailichenko called an ambulance to the wounded man lying on the pavement, and he himself went up to the apartment indicated in the call. The criminal who was there shot at point-blank range.
That event shook the whole city. That is why three years later so many Norilsk residents asked to name a new passage in honor of the deceased policeman.
Vasily Mikhailichenko was officially considered the first policeman in the history of Norilsk to die in the line of duty. However, in the northern city there had been already a similar story 30 years before those events. In 1938, a street in the Old Town was named Melnichenko street – in honor of the guard killed while catching escaped campers.
In the last issue of the History Spot photo project we told about the first director of the Norilsk basin, Iskander Faizullin.
Text: Svetlana Samohina, Photo: Nornickel Polar Division archive