The Kalach brigade, operating in the internal troops, was respected, because it was this brigade that took part in hostilities on the territory of the North Caucasus many times. Five soldiers who are part of the brigade were awarded the honorary Star of the Hero of Russia. But the most interesting soldier of the brigade is the only woman - a nurse, Irina Yanina.
An involuntary refugee
Irina, a native of Taldy-Kurgan, was born in 1960, lived with her family in Kazakhstan until the collapse of the USSR. In Kazakhstan, she got married and became a mother of two children. After Irina finished her studies, she got a job as a nurse in a maternity hospital. However, when the 90s came, they made all Soviet citizens in Kazakhstan real "outsiders". And at one of the family councils, the family decided to move to Russia. This is how Irina, together with her children and parents, ended up in Russia, in the Vologda region.
Naturally, no one was expecting this family in a small town. Therefore, Irina and her family had to start her life from the very beginning - to look for a job, rent an apartment, apply for citizenship. The first such a life could not stand Irina's husband. He left, leaving his wife with children and no money.
To support the family, Irina tried on a military uniform and went to work in military unit 3642 in 1995. By that time, her youngest daughter had passed away due to acute leukemia. In order to somehow cope with grief, Irina needed to do something. Benefits, rations and a salary with a guarantee made her choice.
Life in a war environment
Together with the Kalach brigade in 1996, Irina went to Chechnya. As part of the first campaign, there were 2 business trips, and in total Irina went to the war for 3, 5 months, being a nurse.
Looking at death every day is a difficult test, but such a life was the only chance for Irina to at least somehow solve social problems. At the same time, Irina had a dream - to earn money for her son for an apartment so that her son would never face such difficulties.
Another Chechen campaign moved Irina to Dagestan. The gangs of Khattab and Basayev were also located here, using the resources of the Islamists of the Kadar zone for their own purposes. In the summer of 1999, special forces and military units were transferred to Makhachkala in order to prevent the kindling of war in Dagestan.
In early August, the separatists occupied Botlikh. The federal forces operating there were given the task of ousting the separatists into Chechnya. Irina, being part of the Kalach brigade, again became a participant in hostilities. However, it was this business trip that became the most difficult for her, like life and military field conditions.
Irina, in her regular letters to her parents, with whom she left her son, wrote that she was very bored and really wanted to go home. She also wrote that she regrets her decision to stay in the service. However, usually these were just moments of weakness, because after them Irina usually promised her parents and son that we will “fight, and go home”.
Battle of Karamakhi
Towards the end of August of the same year, residents of a Dagestan village called "Karamakhi" also joined the Islamist republic, and there were about 5,000 residents there. Residents, having driven representatives of local authorities out of the territory of the village, set up checkpoints and created a real impregnable fortress from the village of Karamakhi. The end of the biography and personal life of Irina Yanina is connected with this village.
A detachment of militants, consisting of 500 people, commanded by field commander Jarulla, also strengthened here. Any peaceful breakdowns between the parties have yielded no results. And on August 28, the federal forces decided to start shelling the entire settlement, so that later, while the enemy was disoriented, send the forces of the internal troops and the OMON of Dagestan there.
The village was fully occupied by federation forces only on September 8, and from the moment of shelling until the moment of capture, local residents left the village, engulfed in pain and war. In the battles aimed at clearing the village, among others, the team of the Kalach brigade, in which Irina was involved in providing first aid, was directly involved.
On December 31, the 1st battalion was on the very outskirts of the village, but there the militants set up an ambush, starting a real massacre. The commander of the 22nd brigade decided to help the 1st battalion and sent 3 armored personnel carriers there at once. Irina Yanina was in one of the armored personnel carriers, providing evacuation of the seriously wounded. She provided PMP to 15 soldiers, and then, practically under bullets, pulled out everyone who was not able to move. Three times Irina went literally to the very epicenter, saving the lives of 28 more soldiers.
At the end of the battle, the armored personnel carrier, in which Irina was, was knocked out from the ATGM. The shell caused a fire, but until the fire broke out, Irina helped the wounded get out. But she herself could not escape.
Ammunition, detonated, ended the life of a 32-year-old nurse. But thanks to her, this day became another birthday for several military men.
What do colleagues remember
Larisa Mozzhukhina, a nurse, spoke of Irina as a sympathetic and cheerful person. The death shocked everyone, but worst of all, her remains were placed in a small handkerchief.
Lance corporal Kulakov is the driver of the same armored personnel carrier, in the throat of which Irina was burned. Kulakov said that he tried to pull it out, but due to a break in the unloading, he fell out of the equipment. The car drove a few meters, and then an ammunition load exploded in it.
Irina was awarded the honorary star of the Hero of the Russian Federation in October, and Irina was the only woman to receive such a serious and high award.