Denis Vasiliyevich Vetchinov (Russian: Денис Васильевич Ветчинов; (28 June 1976 in Stepnogorsk – 9 August 2008 in South Ossetia) was a Russian Ground Forces major killed in action during the 2008 South Ossetia war and posthumuously awarded with Russia's highest military award, Hero of the Russian Federation, for his role in the conflict. In film August Eighth Vetchinov became a prototype of captain Ilya played by Khasan Baroyev.
On 9 August 2008, the second day of Russian involvement in the Battle of Tskhinvali, a column of Russian vehicles with a few journalists and 58th army commander Anatoly Khrulyov onboard was ambushed by Georgian special forces in the outskirts of Tskhinvali. Khrulyov was wounded in the ensuing firefight. Vetchinov, armed with a trophy Georgian machine gun, organised defence but was wounded in both legs. He continued firing at the enemy and killed a Georgian soldier. Vetchinov kept covering fire until he was hit in the head by Georgian fire. He died on the way to hospital. On 15 August Denis Vetchinov was posthumuously awarded the Hero of the Russian Federation golden star "for courage and heroism while fulfilling his duty in the North Caucasus region". He is survived by his wife and little daughter.
- "Hero" (in Russian). Lenta.ru. 2008-08-15. Retrieved 2008-08-16.
- "Decree of the president of the Russian Federation" (in Russian). 2008-08-15. Retrieved 2008-08-16.
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