Gulaev, Nikolai Dmitrievich
Born Feb. 26, 1918, in the stanitsa (large cossack village) of Aksaiskaia, present-day Rostov Oblast. Twice Hero of the Soviet Union (Sept. 28, 1943, and July 1, 1944). Lieutenant general of aviation (1968). Member of the CPSU since 1943.
Gulaev was born into a worker’s family. He entered the Soviet Army in 1938 and completed military aviation school in 1940. During the Great Patriotic War (1941–45) he participated in the battles at Stalingrad, Voronezh, and on the First and Second Ukrainian fronts as flight commander, deputy squadron commander, squadron commander, and navigator of the 27th (later the 129th Guards) Fighter Air Regiment. Gulaev performed 240 combat flight missions, took part in 69 aerial battles, and shot down 52 enemy aircraft personally and four more in group fighting.
After the war Gulaev held command positions. In 1950 he graduated from the Zhukovskii Military Air Academy, and in 1960 he graduated from the Military Academy of the General Staff. He now serves in the National Air Defense Forces. Gulaev has been awarded two Orders of Lenin, three Orders of the Red Banner, the Order of the Patriotic War First Class, and two Orders of the Red Star, as well as medals.