Semyon Levbarg

I am in Constanta, Romania in 1944. I am wearing my awards, ‘Orders of Red Star and Red Banner’ that I was awarded for combat action. I sent this photo to my father in evacuation to the Far East. On 24th September 1943 I took part in the landing on Peschanaya spot near Taman. My platoon was one of the first to jump into water from a boat and get to the shore. We attacked the enemy and occupied a beach-head [on the side of the Crimea]. The battle on the spot lasted 9 days non-stop. We were to break through the so-called 'Blue line' defense line of the enemy. I lead my platoon in attacks one hundred times and repulsed enemy's attacks. Then we started operations to prepare to attack Kerch [a town in the Crimea, spreading 80 km along the eastern shore of the peninsula]. Right before this operation I joined the Communist Party. There was no ceremony. All applicant officers received Party membership cards before the battle. I was appointed a commanding officer of a group of marines that included machine gunners, rifle men and mortar men. Our unit landed on the right wing of Kerch on 9th January 1944. In a few days attacks of the town began. I lead my soldiers and killed about 40 enemy-soldiers in that battle. I was awarded a 'First Grade Order' of the Patriotic War for Kerch. We stayed some time in the rear until our battalion was sent to attack ports on the Black Sea. At the end of August 1944 I took part in marine landings to the Romanian port of Constanta. I was assistant Chief of Headquarters of the battalion. I was also in a special unit that captured and disarmed the Romanian Navy. For these operations I was awarded the 'Orders of Red Star and Red Banner'.