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Russian pilot who died while saving 43 passengers to receive posthumous state honor

Russian pilot who died while saving 43 passengers to receive posthumous state honor
The crew of a Russian passenger plane that crash-landed in Siberia during an emergency landing are to be awarded state honors. Two crewmembers died in the incident, while all of the passengers survived.

The tragedy happened in June of this year in the Buryatia Region of eastern Siberia. The An-24 aircraft, operated by Angara Airlines, was on a domestic flight when one of its engines broke down, forcing the plane to make an emergency landing. The plane then skidded off the runway, crashing into a nearby sewage plant and caught fire.

Captain Vladimir Kolomin and flight engineer Oleg Bardanov were killed, while the 43 passengers on board were rescued. Kolomin and Bardanov will each be posthumously awarded the Order of Courage, local authorities said on Thursday.

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First officer Sergey Sazonov and stewardess Yelena Laputskaya, who evacuated the passengers, will each receive the Nesterov Medal. The honor, which is awarded to flight crews for bravery, is named after aviation pioneer Pyotr Nesterov. In the early days of WWI, he became the first pilot to destroy an enemy plane by ramming it during aerial combat. Nesterov died during the attack.

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