Vasily Fedorovich Orlov was the Commander of the 6th Guards Mechanized Corps (4th Guards Tank Army, 1st Ukrainian Front), a Colonel of the Guards, the Hero of the Soviet Union. He was born on February 15 (28), 1916 in the village of Volosovo, the Peterhof district, the Petrograd province (now the city of Volosovo, the Leningrad region). He was Russian. In 1932 he graduated from the Faculty of Labor at the Leningrad Institute of Civil Engineers. In 1932-1933 he studied at Leningrad Industrial Institute. He was in the army since November 1933. In 1937 he graduated from the Military Academy of Mechanization and Motorization. Since November 1937 he was in reserve. He worked as the shop manager and technical director of the Leningrad Automobile Repair Plant. Since July 1939 he was the Chief mechanic and chief engineer of the Leningrad State Mechanical Plant. He continued to serve in the army since June 1941. He was a participant of the Great Patriotic War: in August-September 1941 he was the commander of the 107th separate tank battalion, in September-October 1941 he was the commander of the 51st separate tank battalion, in October-November 1941 he was the Deputy commander of the 107th separate tank battalion, in November-December 1941 he was the commander of the 107th separate tank regiment, in December 1941 – January 1942 he was thc commander of the 107th separate tank battalion. He fought on the Leningrad Front. He participated in the defence of Leningrad. In January 1942, near the village of Dubrovka (the Vsevolozhsky district of the Leningrad region) he was seriously wounded, and until May 1942 he was being treated in the Leningrad hospital. In July-October 1942 he was the Commander of the 119th Tank Brigade, in December 1942 he was the commander of the 31st tank Brigade. He fought on the Kalinin and Western fronts. He participated in the Rzhev-Sychev operation and defensive battles in the Rzhev direction. Until April 1943, he continued to command a tank brigade, which was withdrawn to the rear for reformation (to the Moscow Military District). In July 1943 – April 1944 he was the Commander of the 8th Guards Tank Brigade (Bryansk, Southern and 2nd Ukrainian fronts). He participated in the Orel, Donbass, Melitopol and Korsun-Shevchenko operations. He was slightly wounded twice. Since December 1944 he was the Commander of the 6th Guards Mechanized Corps (1st Ukrainian Front). He participated in the Sandomierz-Silesian, Lower Silesian and Upper Silesian operations. He especially distinguished himself during the liberation of Poland. In January 1945, having captured the villages of Konske and Stomporkow (now the cities of the Świętokrzyskie Voivodeship, Poland), the corps under his command cut off the escape routes of the enemy’s Radom grouping. In January-February 1945, corps formations took part in the liberation of the cities of Piotrkow (now the city of Piotrkow-Trybunalski, the Lodz Voivodeship, Poland) and Sommerfeld (now the city of Lubsko, the Lubusz Voivodeship, Poland), crossing the Oder River from the move. During these battles, 150 tanks, up to 100 guns were destroyed, and many enemy soldiers and officers were killed. In a battle near the city of Oppeln (now the city of Opole, Poland) on March 17, 1945, he was seriously wounded and died of wounds on March 18, 1945. He was buried at the Novodevichy Cemetery in Moscow. For the skillful command of the corps and the personal courage and heroism shown at the same time, by the Decree of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR dated April 6, 1945, Colonel Vasily Fedorovich Orlov of the Guards was posthumously awarded the title of the Hero of the Soviet Union.
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