Aviators
K

KRASTINS, VIKTORS

Krastins' Military College Cadet photo
  • April 24, 1935 - begins flight school as a member of the Latvian Aero Club's first Sport Flier course. He successfully completed the program before starting Military College in 1936.
  • 1936 - enrolled in Military College
  • July 31, 1938 - as a member of the Latvian Aero Club, he crashes and destroys Pulins' "Zilais Putns III" while taking off near Valka.
  • 1938 - graduates from Military College (Rank: Lieutenant)
  • 1939 - serves as assistant to the director of meteorology at the Aviation School.
  • May 25, 1939 - the Jelgava and Riga glider schools are combined into one - the Riga Central Glider School - with Krastins as director of the program.
  • December 4, 1939 - begins flight school (observer).
  • June 18, 1940 - (Soviet Occupation) - the non-flying members of the Aviation Regiment gather at their headquarters on Daugavgrivas street, but V.Krastins is assigned as the duty officer at Spilve because he speaks Russian well. He remained at this post for a number of days.
  • July-August, 1940 - a delegation of the Aviation Regiment travels to the Aviation Festival in Moscow, presumably to familiarize themselves with Soviet aviation technology and practices. This delegation is led by Viktors Krastins.
  • 1940-1941 - Serves with the Latvian Squadron of the Soviet 24th Territorial Corps, stationed at Gulbene and flying the SV-5s. It must be noted that during this period he cooperated with the Soviet military to such a degree that it appears he was both a collaborator and informer against his Latvian colleagues.
  • June 1941 - when the Germans attacked the Soviet Union, the Gulbene Squadron received orders to withdraw into Soviet territory. Many of the Latvians used this opportunity to escape to the other side, while others were taken into the Soviet Union against their wishes. Krastins willingly went with the Squadron to Rzhev (though he did manage to crash the KOD-1 on takeoff from Gulbene).

    Sources

    - Bruvelis, Edvins Latvijas Aviacijas Vesture
    - Daugavas Vanagu Menesraksts, 1970 No.3 pg. 18, 19
    - Daugavas Vanagu Menesraksts, 1982 No.5 pg. 26
    - Daugavas Vanagu Menesraksts, 1982 No.6 pg. 37
    - Daugavas Vanagu Menesraksts, 1983 No.2 pg. 11
    - Daugavas Vanagu Menesraksts, 1983 No.3 pg. 31
    - Daugavas Vanagu Menesraksts, 1983 No.4 pg. 6, 7
    - Daugavas Vanagu Menesraksts, 1983 No.6 pg. 27, 28, 29
    - Kadets No.8, 1979.

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