Boris Bugayev

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Boris Bugayev in 1970

Boris Pavlovich Bugaev (Russian: Борис Павлович Бугаев; 9 July 1923 – 13 January 2007) was a Soviet military pilot, politician and statesman.


Bugaev was born in the village of Mankivka in the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic into a family of teachers. From 1941 to 1942 he was a cadet on aircraft training squadrons. He spent World War II years from 1942 to 1943 as a pilot instructor and then as an operational pilot.[1]

After the war Bugaev left the Soviet Air Forces and worked in civil aviation. It was also at this time that he became involved in politics, having joined the Communist Party in 1946. As a pilot for Aeroflot, he undertook several pioneering flights to explore new routes, including to India, Burma and Indonesia.[1]

For many years Bugaev was a trusted pilot of Leonid Brezhnev, which helped Bugaev throughout his career. On 9 February 1961 he flew Il-18 carrying Brezhnev and the Soviet delegation to Guinea. Above the Mediterranean Sea, near Algeria, the plane was attacked by a hijacked French military jet, which fired twice at Il-18. Bugaev managed to steer the plane out of danger, which was highly praised by Brezhnev.[1]

In 1966 Bugaev was appointed Deputy Minister for Civil Aviation and the following year he became First Deputy Minister of Civil Aviation. 1966 also saw Bugaev granted the honorary title of Hero of Socialist Labour.[1]

From 1970 to 1987 Bugaev was Minister of Civil Aviation of the USSR. On 5 November 1973 he was promoted to Marshal of the aviation and on 28 October 1977 to Chief marshal of the aviation. He retired in 1992 and died on 13 January 2007 in Moscow.[1]

Honours and awards[edit]


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