Women of the Red Army 01

17 more in collection WWII: Women of the Red Army 70 Years Later

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Born in 1925, 90 year-old Svetlana is the mother of four children. Drafted into the Red army with the outbreak of the war as a mail woman, she was positioned in Yakoutsk Siberia. She was 16 years old when the war began with the German invasion of her country on June 22n 1941.

“I learned about the invasion by radio, and it was a real shock for me," she recalls. She was then mobilised into the Red army, and positioned at a local military post office for the entirety of the war. Her work consisted of announcing the deaths of soldiers to their families or wives. In other words, she was like an 'Angel of Death’ delivering the worst news possible to loved ones, going from house to house knocking on people’s doors with a small triangular letter in her hand. During the winters, she remembers that because it was so cold she would travel on horseback from one location to another. Svetlana never doubted that the USSR would be victorious against the Nazis. “I new it would take time, but I never doubted our final victory," she said. After the war, she continued her work in the postal service.