Viktor Leselidze

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Viktor Nikolaevich Leselidze
Виктор Николаевич Леселидзе
ვიქტორ ლესელიძე
Born (1907-01-07)January 7, 1907
Ozurgeti, Russian Empire
Died June 28, 1944(1944-06-28) (aged 37)
Republic of Karelia, Soviet Union
Allegiance  Soviet Union
Service/branch Red Army
Years of service 1925–1944
Rank lieutenant colonel
Commands held Artillery battalions
619th mortar regiment, Soviet 7th army
Battles/wars Winter War
World War II
Continuation War:
Awards Hero of the Soviet Union
Order of Lenin ribbon bar.png

Viktor Nikolaevich Leselidze (Russian: Виктор Николаевич Леселидзе, Georgian: ვიქტორ ლესელიძე, Viktor Leselidze) (January 7, 1907 – June 28, 1944), was a Colonel and Hero of the Soviet Union who distuingished himself during a fatal yet successful melee assault against Finnish forces at the Svir River in World War II. He was also the brother of Col.General Konstantin Leselidze who died in the same year.[1]

Early life

Born on 7 January 1907 in Ozurgeti, Viktor Leselidze was raised in a military family, being one of four brothers serving in the Soviet army. His elder brother Konstantin Leselidze was a Colonel General just like their father Otar Leselidze. After graduating from 6th grade he joined the Red Army in 1925 and later in 1929 graduated from the "Transcaucasus Military Artillery School". Afterwards he served in the Leningrad Military District and became member of the CPSU in 1938.[2]

Military service

Leselidze took part in the 1939–40 Soviet-Finnish War and from 1941 consequently in World War II where he would meet his fate. Commanding artillery battalions till 1944, he took command over the 619th mortar regiment of the 7th Soviet Red Army, Karelian Front and provided crucial fire support for the 763rd Infantry Regiment during the Vyborg–Petrozavodsk Offensive close to the city Lod in the Vicinity of Leningrad. Successfully pushing the enemy forces out of the area from 22–27 June Colonel Leselidze and his unit participated in destroying hostile defensive lines and paving the way for infantry assaults along Lake Ladoga. However after the Tuloksa landing Finnish forces were reinforced with reserves and mounted a counterattack pushing the fresh Soviet troops off the shores and advanced very close to the observation post of the 619th mortar regiment posing an imminent threat to the regimental headquarters. On June 28, 1944 cut off from infantry support and surrounded Viktor Leselidze gathered all soldiers he could find at the NP near the village of Vidlitza and commenced a melee attack personally leading the charge with a group of officers. The heavily outnumbered group prevailed in close combat and defeated the Axis troops which scattered over the entire area. Leselidze got killed during that assault. He is claimed to have been shot by a sniper.[3] Only one out of four brothers would survive the war.

Involvement in war

Scene of conflict Since when By what time
Soviet-Finnish war of 1939-1940.
Murmansk area of Petsamo December 1939 March 1940
Great Patriotic War
Leningrad Front: near Luga and Leningrad.

Seriously wounded, shell-shocked

July 1941

August 24, 1941

December 1941
Northwestern Front under the Staraya Russa March 1942 July 1943
Karelian Front March 1944 June 28, 1944

Awards[4] [5]

For inspiring and exemplary heroism in the face of an overwhelming enemy force, Viktor Nikolaevich Leselidze was posthumously awarded Hero of the Soviet Union and the Order of Lenin on 21 July 1944[6]


Name of the Lieutenant Colonel Leselidze VN mentioned on the stove Monument to the Heroic Defenders of Leningrad. [7][8]


  • Герои Советского Союза: Краткий биографический словарь / Пред. ред. коллегии И. Н. Шкадов. — М.: Воениздат, 1987. — Т. 1 /Абаев — Любичев/. — 911 с. — 100 000 экз. — ISBN отс., Рег. № в РКП 87-95382
  • ПАРОЛЬ — «ПОБЕДА!». Воспоминания участников битвы за Ленинград. Составитель — Я. Ф. Потехин. Лениздат. 1969. Воспоминание П. С. Мазеца «На Лужском рубеже».