Efimov, Mikhail Nikiforovich
Born Nov. 1 (13), 1881, in Smolensk; died August 1919 in Odessa. One of the first Russian airplane pilots.
Efimov was the son of a worker. He graduated from a trade school and worked as an electrical engineer in the railroad industry in Odessa. He was active in amateur activities involving bicycles, motorcycles, and airplanes. In 1909 he made his first glider flights. In 1910 he graduated from Farman’s flight school in France. That same year he set several world aviation records in competitions at Nice and St. Petersburg and was appointed instructor pilot at the school of military aviation in Sevastopol’ (Kacha). Efimov trained many Russian military pilots and made test flights of new airplanes. In 1910–11 he was the first pilot to engage in steep banking, diving, and gliding with the engine turned off. In 1912 he invented a device by which the pilot could start the engine without outside assistance. He fought as a fighter pilot in World War I. After the October Revolution he sided with Soviet power and worked in the flight school at Kazan. He was shot by the White Guards during the Civil War.