Military Wiki
Anatoly Lebed
Lieutenant Colonel Anatoly Lebed
Personal details
Born Anatoly Vyacheslavovich Lebed
Анатолий Вячеславович Лебедь

(1963-05-10)10 May 1963
Valga, Estonian SSR, Soviet Union
Died 27 April 2012(2012-04-27) (aged 48)[1]
Moscow, Russia
Nationality Russian
Profession Soldier
Military service
Allegiance  Soviet Union
Service/branch Soviet Army
Russian armyRussian Airborne Troops
Years of service 1981–1994
Rank Lieutenant colonel
Commands 45th Independent Special Purpose (Spetsnaz) Order of Kutuzov Order of Alexander Nevsky Guards Regiment
Battles/wars Afghan War, Yugoslav Wars, War in Dagestan, Second Chechen War, South Ossetia war
Awards Hero of the Russian Federation medal.png

OrderStGeorge4cl rib.png
Orden of Courage.pngOrden of Courage.pngOrden of Courage.png
Order redstar rib.pngOrder redstar rib.pngOrder redstar rib.png
Order service to the homeland3 rib.png20YearsServiceRibbon2009.png15YearsServiceRibbon2009.png

President Medvedev decorating Lt Col Lebed with the Order of St George 4th class on October 1, 2008

Medal "From the Grateful Afghan People

Anatoly Vyacheslavovich Lebed (Russian: Анатолий Вячеславович Лебедь) (10 May 1963 - 27 April 2012), was a Hero of the Russian Federation, Guards Lieutenant Colonel in Special Airborne Forces, an officer of the 45th Independent Special Purpose (Spetsnaz) Order of Kutuzov Order of Alexander Nevsky Guards Regiment.


Soviet Military Service

Lebed was born in the city of Valga, Estonia. He joined the Soviet Armed Forces in 1981 starting his military service in Soviet Airborne Troops (Russian: Воздушно-десантные войска). He first trained in the 44th Airborne Division in Gaižiūnai in the Lithuanian SSR and later served in the 57th Independent Air Assault Brigade in Taldykorgan in the Kazakh SSR.[2]

Opting for a career change, he entered the Lomonosov Military Aviation Technical School graduating as a flight engineer in 1986. He served on combat operations in Afghanistan in 1986-87 as an aircrew member in a helicopter regiment.[2]

After his return from Afghanistan, he served successively in the Group of Soviet Forces in Germany, in the Trans-Baikal and Siberian military districts in the 329th Transport & Combat Helicopter Regiment and in the 337th Independent Helicopter Regiment.[2]

His service had earned him the Order "For Service to the Homeland in the Armed Forces" 3rd class and three Orders of the Red Star.

Russian Federation Military Service

He retired to the reserves in 1994 and worked for the Afghan Veterans benevolent fund.[2]

In 1999, he went to the North Caucasus as a volunteer in the combined militias after purchasing his own equipment and flying to Makhachkala in Dagestan. When military ops moved into Chechnya in October 1999, he went to Moscow and re enlisted in the service signing a contract with the Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation and immediately returned to Chechnya to participate in counter-terrorism operations. From 1999 to 2007, he made over 10 trips to Chechnya and participated in special operations in the areas of the cities of Gudermes and Argun, as well as in the suburbs of Grozny and the Vedeno region.[2]

In 2003, while engaged in combat in the Ulus-Kert mountains, he stepped on a mine and lost a foot. He refused to resign from the Armed Forces, his superior physical fitness allowed him to remain in the service, to carry on parachuting (over 840 jumps) and to still do martial arts with the prosthesis.[2]

On January 9, 2005 his patrol was ambushed, refusing to let his injured men be captured by the enemy, he single-handedly engaged and overcame an enemy superior in numbers.[2]

In a subsequent battle on January 24, 2005, he was injured by multiple fragment wounds in the back while shielding his men from the blast of a rocket propelled grenade. Even wounded, he personally neutralised the enemy rocket and machine gun post then continued leading the patrol leading to the capture and destruction of a terrorist base.[2]

He was awarded the Title of Hero of the Russian Federation on April 6, 2005 by Presidential Decree citing "for courage and heroism in the performance of military duties in the North Caucasus".[3] He then held the rank of captain.

His actions during the 2008 South Ossetia war earned him the honour of becoming only the second Knight of the Order of St. George 4th class.[4] During the October 1, 2008 award ceremony, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev said of Lebed: "Among us there is a Special Forces officer, a Hero of the Russian Federation, Anatoly Vyacheslavovich Lebed. He always led from the front during combat operations, always displaying the epitome of personal courage itself".[5]

On April 27, 2012, in Moscow, Colonel Lebed was involved in a motorcycle accident which took his life.


See also


  1. "Russia’s Hero Anatoly Lebed dies: Voice of Russia". :. Retrieved 2012-08-06. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 2.7 "Biography of Anatoly Lebed" (in Russian). War Heroes. 2010. Retrieved 2012-02-24. 
  3. "Decree of the President of the Russian Federation of May 5, 2005" (in Russian). Site of the President of the Russian Federation – Kremlin News. 2005-05-05. Retrieved 2012-02-24. 
  4. "Decree of the President of the Russian Federation of October 1, 2008" (in Russian). Site of the President of the Russian Federation – Kremlin News. 2008-10-01. Retrieved 2012-02-24. 
  5. "President Medvedev’s speech during October 1, 2008 award ceremony" (in Russian). Site of the President of the Russian Federation – Kremlin News. 2008-10-01. Retrieved 2012-02-24. 

External links

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