Russia Killed Them: Military Pilots Who Died for Ukraine

Agency of media ABO
Russia Killed Them: Military Pilots Who Died for Ukraine

With the beginning of the full-scale invasion, the ABO media development agency created the project "Memorial: Killed by Russia." The Memorial preserves the names of civilians and military personnel who died as a result of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. "We created this memorial so that you can learn about everyone who was killed by the Russian army," the media say. "Svidomi" in collaboration with "Memorial: Killed by Russia," tells about military pilots who died in the war.

Oleksandr Kukurba

Military pilot Major Oleksandr Kukurba died on July 26, 2022, during his 100th combat sortie. He was 27 years old.

He studied at the Ivan Bohun Military High School. Even then, he wanted to be a military pilot, namely a fighter pilot. Oleksandr studied everything about airplanes and graduated from Ivan Kozhedub National Air Force University. In peacetime, each flight was supposed to take a specific amount of time, but this did not stop the man: he flew until there was no fuel left, only for a safe landing.

Since February 24, 2022, Oleksandr Kukurba has received three state awards: the Order of Bohdan Khmelnytskyi II and III class and the title of Hero of Ukraine. Posthumously, Oleksandr Kukurba became a Full Knight of the Order of Bohdan Khmelnytskyi. By the end of April, Kukurba had destroyed 15 tanks, about 50 combat units of armored vehicles and other weaponry, as well as about 300 enemy military personnel.

Ihor Bedzai

Colonel of the Navy Ihor Bedzai was killed by a missile launched from a Russian fighter jet on May 7, 2022, while performing a combat mission as part of the crew of a Mi-14 naval helicopter. He was posthumously awarded the title of Hero of Ukraine.

In 2014, Bedzai temporarily commanded the 10th Saq Brigade of Naval Aviation. At the same time, his brigade became the only unit of the Armed Forces of Ukraine that managed to withdraw military equipment from temporarily occupied Crimea. Bedzai managed the risky operation to save planes and helicopters at Russian gunpoint.

"One of the best officers of the Naval Forces died in the sky of Ukraine — Colonel Ihor Bedzai, better known as the former commander of the 10th Marine Aviation Brigade from Novofedorivka, near Saq, Crimea," wrote Taras Chmut, head of the Come Back Alive NGO.

Oleksandr Oksanchenko

Colonel Oleksandr Oksanchenko died in an aerial battle over Kyiv, turning the Russian army's aircraft on him. He would have turned 54 in two months. He was posthumously awarded the title of Hero of Ukraine.

Oleksandr is from the Dnipropetrovsk region; he graduated from the Kharkiv Higher Military Aviation School of Pilots named after Hrytsevets, served in the 831st Tactical Aviation Brigade; fought in the Anti-Terrorist Operation Zone. He had over two thousand flight hours.

Oksanchenko repeatedly represented the country and won prizes in aerobatic shows around the world: SIAF, The Royal International Air Tattoo, International Airshow — 2017, and Czech International Air Fest. Oleksandr Oksanchenko performed aerobatics on a Su-27 fighter jet.

He trained hundreds of Ukrainian pilots who continue the work he had started — defending Ukraine's airspace.

Anton Lystopad

Military pilot Anton Lystopad died on August 7, 2022.

Lystopad was born in the Arkhangelsk region of the Russian Federation in the family of a high-class military pilot, Valentyn Lystopad. He studied at the Physical and Technical Lyceum of the Ivano-Frankivsk Regional Council and received his higher education at the Ivan Kozhedub National Air Force University. He became a top-class military pilot. In 2018, Anton began serving in the 204th Sevastopol Tactical Aviation Brigade "Oleksandr Pokryshkin." Participated in the Joint Forces Operation. In 2019, he was recognized as the best pilot of the Ukrainian Air Forces.

In 2021, Captain Lystopad led the aircraft column that flew over Khreshchatyk during the parade for the 30th anniversary of the Independence of Ukraine.

With the beginning of the large-scale invasion, Anton Lystopad took part in the defense of Ukraine. A few days before his death, the pilot received the Order For Courage III class. He was posthumously awarded the rank of major.

Oleksandr Korpan

From the first day of the full-scale invasion, the commander of the aviation unit, Captain Oleksandr Korpan, performed the command's combat tasks. The 27-year-old officer destroyed Over 100 units of enemy military equipment.

On March 2, 2022, while returning from a combat sortie, Korpan's plane was hit by the Russians. The captain took the plane away from the airfield and at the cost of his own life saved their brothers-in-arms and the civilians of Starokostiantyniv, the Khmelnytskyi region. He was posthumously awarded the title of Hero of Ukraine.

Oleksandr Korpan grew up in the family of a serviceman in Sevastopol. His father was a pilot, so the boy also dreamed of this profession. He received secondary education at the Sevastopol Naval Lyceum while simultaneously studying at a music school. He graduated from the Ivan Kozhedub National Air Force University, having acquired the degree of an attack pilot and mastered the Su-25 aircraft. In 2021, he was awarded the title of the best pilot.

"Sasha loved the sky a lot. He flew the Su-25 fighter jet and had a talented crew of pilots. He was a very responsible leader," said his wife Yuliia Korpan. He was buried next to his father in the Ternopil region.

The text was prepared by the "Memorial" platform which tells the stories of Ukrainian civilians and soldiers killed by Russia, exclusively for "Svidomi". To report data on Ukraine's losses, fill out the following forms: for military and civilian victims.