Marina Popovich

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Marina Popovich
Born Марина Лаврентьевна Васильева
(1931-07-20) July 20, 1931 (age 85)
Leonenki, Smolensk Oblast, USSR
Nationality Russian
Occupation pilot, author
Known for 102 world records
Awards Orden of Courage.png

Marina Lavrentievna Popovich, née Vasiliyeva, born July 20, 1931 in Leonenki, Smolensk Oblast) is a retired Soviet Air Force colonel, engineer, and legendary Soviet test pilot who holds 102[1][2] aviation world records set on over 40 types of aircraft. She is one of the most famous pilots in Russian history, and one of the most important female pilots of all time.[3]


Marina Vasilieva became a Soviet Air Force pilot and in 1964, a military test pilot. She authored nine books and two screenplays. Among many other awards, she has been honored as Hero of Socialist Labor, the Order of Courage (presented personally by Vladimir Putin in June 2007)[1] and a star in the Cancer constellation bears her name.[4]

Marina Popovich, a Russian Writers' Union member, authored nine books, including the poetry collection Zhizn – vechny vzlyot (Life's An Eternal Rise, 1972).[3] She is a co-author of two film scripts, Nebo So Mnoy (Sky Is With Me, 1974)[5] and Buket Fialok (Bouquet of Violets, 1983).[3]

Popovich and UFOs[edit]

Marina Popovich speaks about her experience with UFOs in her book titled UFO Glasnost (published in 2003 in Germany) and in public lectures and interviews. She claims that the Soviet military and civilian pilots have confirmed 3000 UFO sightings and that the Soviet Air Force and KGB have fragments of five crashed UFOs. The crash sites were Tunguska (1908), Novosibirsk, Tallinn, Ordzhonikidze and Dalnegorsk (1986).

Private life[edit]

Marina Popovich's first husband was Pavel Popovich, a former Soviet cosmonaut,[6] with whom she had two daughters, Natalya (b. 1956) and Oksana (b. 1968), both Moscow State Institute of International Relations graduates.[7] She has two granddaughters, Tatyana and Alexandra, and grandson Michael, the latter born in England. [8] Her second husband is Boris Alexandrovich Zhikhorev, a retired Russian Airforce Major general, Deputy chairman of the Central Committee of the Union of the Soviet Officers.[9]

Honours and awards[edit]


  1. ^ a b Marina Popovich at Best People of Russia site.
  2. ^ Russian Cosmonaut Marina Popovich discloses UFOs. - ExopoliticsTV interview with Alfred Lambremont Webre.
  3. ^ a b c "Марина Лаврентьевна Попович (Васильева)". Retrieved 2010-08-13. 
  4. ^ "Попович Марина Лаврентьевна". Retrieved 2011-01-01. 
  5. ^ Nebo So Mnoy at
  6. ^ "Pavel Romanovich Popovich" (in Russian). Space Encyclopedia ASTROnote. 11 June 2009. Retrieved 2009-09-30. 
  7. ^ "Pavel Popovich, sixth man in orbit, dies". collectSPACE. 30 September 2009. Retrieved 2009-09-30. 
  8. ^ "М.Л. Попович. Фотографии". Современный музей спорта. Archived from the original on 2012-04-11. Retrieved 2011-10-10. 
  9. ^ [Kolysko, Tatyana. A Star Named Marina / Звезда по имени Марина. Gudok, No. 194, 2003.