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Old 01-11-2015, 09:39 AM   #1
Al-muell
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Lieutenant Leon Burak, Tank Driver/Mechanic, 2nd Tank Regiment, 1st Armoured Brigade

A group to authentic tanker, who could have been a prototype for the characters of the "Four Armor Troopers and a dog" TV series - Leon Burak, a tank driver/mechanic. The group is incompleate, but also contains a lot of post-war documents and photographs.

So, first we have his awards - at least those that I have. Silver "Meritous..." and "For Oder, Niesse, Baltic Sea" have the ribbons missing. The additional ribbon came with the group, but I am not sure if it belongs to the group.

And here is a nice, coloured and framed enlarged photograph of our hero around 1946 (it was hard to take a good shot, and it's too large to scan, so two pictures). Doesn't look very different from the main character of the "Four...".
The portrait shows that both Warsaw medals are missing, as well as Victory and Freedom medal. Not sure why. It also shows, that he wore Berlin and VoG medals in different configuration than shown above, which may explain the medal-shaped stain on the Berlin medal.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg grupa.jpg (95.3 KB, 7 views)
File Type: jpg portret kiepski.jpg (46.3 KB, 5 views)
File Type: jpg portret wyraźny.jpg (79.8 KB, 8 views)
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Old 01-11-2015, 09:52 AM   #2
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Re: plt./lt. Leon Burak, tank driver/mechanic, 2nd tank regiment, 1st Armored brigade

Than we have his Grunwald Badge diploma - also framed, although he clearly wore it folded in his pocket for some time.

1946-dated Soviet "Forcapture of Berlin" medal doc - has the stamp of the 1st Warsaw Separate Reconnaissance Motorized Regiment - it's interesting, as other than stamps on documents, nothing suggests he ever served in this somewhat "elite" unit. Probably his episode here was a short one.

Than we have his VoG medal doc, and what's left of his "For the liberation of Warsaw" document.

Note, that there was some problem with his father's name - he removed it from all the older documents. Maybe there was some mistake, or he didn't like the russian version "Kirill" (instead of Cyryl), on the other hand, he left his name, regardles that they once wrote "Leon" and the other time - "Leonid".
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File Type: jpg grunwald.jpg (98.0 KB, 0 views)
File Type: jpg 1946berlin.jpg (29.7 KB, 2 views)
File Type: jpg 1946berlin+wawa.jpg (57.7 KB, 2 views)
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Old 01-11-2015, 10:02 AM   #3
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Re: plt./lt. Leon Burak, tank driver/mechanic, 2nd tank regiment, 1st Armored brigade

1946 grunwald badge small doc, again same unit stamp, again father's name removed.

1946 "For Oder Niesse, Baltic Sea" medal temporary doc. Same unit, same damage.

1968 "To the Meritous on the Field of Glory" silver Medal doc - gives the base date same as awarding date - strange, as he definately had his wartime one in 1946 already. It's either a replacement doc with wrong date or he got another one, but nothing seems to indicate that. It is possible that he got this one as his tank was among the first to get into the center of the town of Błonie during it's capture (he mentions this episode in a later document), but that is a speculation.
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File Type: jpg 1946grunwald.jpg (59.6 KB, 0 views)
File Type: jpg 1946odranysa.jpg (85.2 KB, 1 views)
File Type: jpg 1968znpch.jpg (45.2 KB, 1 views)
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Old 01-11-2015, 10:29 AM   #4
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1968 Employee's insurance ID with the stamp of the company he worked in - ELBUD in Warsaw (company that specialised in construction related to the electricity - power plants, power lines etc.) and 1975 Permission to operate HIAB-550/3 and HDS-3 construction cranes

First pages of his 1970 Military booklet - basic data: born in 1924 in Kraśne near Mołodeczno, now USSR, occupation and trained occupation - car driver.

Education - 7 classes of the primary school in Kraśne. In 1949 examined by the medical commission and found fit for military service.

Served from 5th May 1943 to 28th January 1947 in the 1st Armored Brigade, 2nd Tank Regiment, military specialty nr 337 tank driver/mechanic, rank - plutonowy (NCO)

Promotions - showing a first chapter of "They don't know what they are doing in the Army" story:
Promoted to plutonowy on 5th March 1945 by the order of the commander of the 2nd Tank Battalion.

Promoted to sergeant by the order of the Chief of Voivodeship Military HQ in Warsaw nr 4 of 9th May 1975...

Promoted to senior staff sgt. by the order of the Commander of the Warsaw Military District nr 7 of 30th of April 1975!:wow
And it's not the end of the story as later documents will show...


Next page tells us he had taken his military oath on 10th July 1943 in the 1st Infantry Regiment (famous ceremony in Seltsy on Oka)

Another page shows how military clerks were well informed on awards' names:

"Silver medal on the field of glory
For Berlin Oder and Niesse and for Warsaw"
Also awarded "For the participation in the fights for Berlin" in 1973


Sent to the reserve in April 1949

Another page shows us that hewas called for one-month military exercise of the reserve in September 1957 as a tank driver.


Next document is his 1971 Pioneer of Labour (stakhanovite) badge doc - issued by the Trade union of the Workers of the Energy Industry.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg 1968PZU+1976żuraw.jpg (92.4 KB, 0 views)
File Type: jpg 1970książeczka1.jpg (68.4 KB, 0 views)
File Type: jpg 1970książeczka2.jpg (95.2 KB, 1 views)
File Type: jpg 1970książeczka3.jpg (45.3 KB, 0 views)
File Type: jpg 1970książeczka4.jpg (92.7 KB, 0 views)
File Type: jpg 1970książeczka5.jpg (58.0 KB, 0 views)
File Type: jpg 1970książeczka6.jpg (99.2 KB, 0 views)
File Type: jpg 1970książeczka7.jpg (60.7 KB, 0 views)
File Type: jpg 1971Przodownik.jpg (78.6 KB, 0 views)
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Old 01-11-2015, 10:37 AM   #5
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Re: plt./lt. Leon Burak, tank driver/mechanic, 2nd tank regiment, 1st Armoured brigad

1972 greeting card on the occasion of 28th anniversary of the battle of Studzianki (major battle with significant participation of Polish armor troops, those familiar with Chuikov's wartime biography should recognise the place).

1973 Invitation to a meeting of the veterans of the 1st and 2nd Army with the Party and Social Activists in a secundary school in Pruszków on the ocasion of 30th anniversary of the Polish People's Army. The additional note asks the veterans to show up in uniforms - if they have them - and with all the medals.

Envelopes for the above 2 documents...
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File Type: jpg 1972studzianki pozdr.jpg (78.3 KB, 0 views)
File Type: jpg 1973zapr.jpg (80.9 KB, 0 views)
File Type: jpg koperty.jpg (42.8 KB, 0 views)
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Old 01-11-2015, 10:41 AM   #6
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Re: plt./lt. Leon Burak, tank driver/mechanic, 2nd tank regiment, 1st Armoured brigad

1973 "For participation in the Fights for Berlin" Medal doc and 1975 "For merits to the Kielce Voivodeship" badge doc

1974 Member's participation card for the celeprations of the 30th anniversary of the battle of Studzianki with acommodation in tent 6, bed 13.

1974 Gold Cross of Merit doc
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File Type: jpg 1973berlin+1975kieleckie.jpg (74.0 KB, 0 views)
File Type: jpg 1974studziankikarta.jpg (20.3 KB, 0 views)
File Type: jpg 1974zkz.jpg (58.8 KB, 0 views)
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Old 01-11-2015, 10:49 AM   #7
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Re: plt./lt. Leon Burak, tank driver/mechanic, 2nd tank regiment, 1st Armoured brigad

1975 Promotion to sr. staff sgt. - the one mentionned in the military ID, in it's original cover.

And as a continuation of the story: 1990 promotion to sgt. What the...?:Wow
This man was probably a world record holder - promoted to sgt. twice eventhough he had a higher rank already in the first time. And it's not the end of the story:


2002 promotion to Lieutenant - would be OK if not for the fact, that his rank is given as private. It gives You an opportunity to see how military administration works here.
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File Type: jpg 1975 s sierżant sztab.jpg (72.6 KB, 1 views)
File Type: jpg 1990awans s sierżant.jpg (51.2 KB, 1 views)
File Type: jpg 2002 awans podporucznik.jpg (58.2 KB, 1 views)
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Old 01-11-2015, 10:53 AM   #8
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Re: plt./lt. Leon Burak, tank driver/mechanic, 2nd tank regiment, 1st Armoured brigad

1974 Victory and Freedom Medal doc - probably also replacement of earlier doc, as he had the medal in 1946.

1978 Polonia Restituta Cavalier's Cross doc - probably for ZBoWiD activity.

Undated photograph probably from late 1970's of 3 ELBUD employees, with Leon Burak in the center.
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File Type: jpg 1976ZiW.jpg (64.0 KB, 0 views)
File Type: jpg 1978KKOOP.jpg (69.3 KB, 0 views)
File Type: jpg fotoelbud.jpg (65.5 KB, 0 views)
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Old 01-11-2015, 10:57 AM   #9
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Re: plt./lt. Leon Burak, tank driver/mechanic, 2nd tank regiment, 1st Armoured brigad

1980 Medical opinion for a car driver 1st class - fit for work, but should be carefull at stressful situations

1989 "For merits to the state defense" bronze medal doc

1993 Veteran's ID
Attached Images
File Type: jpg 1980orzeczenie.jpg (71.0 KB, 0 views)
File Type: jpg 1989zzdok.jpg (49.2 KB, 0 views)
File Type: jpg 1993kombatant.jpg (71.4 KB, 0 views)
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Old 01-11-2015, 10:59 AM   #10
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Re: plt./lt. Leon Burak, tank driver/mechanic, 2nd tank regiment, 1st Armoured brigad

Next page, showing activity as Polish army May 1943-May 1945.

1995 "Independance Fights Veteran" badge doc.

1984 40 years of the PRP medal doc.
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File Type: jpg 1993kombatant2.jpg (87.8 KB, 0 views)
File Type: jpg 1995weteran.jpg (42.7 KB, 0 views)
File Type: jpg 198440lprl.jpg (55.2 KB, 0 views)
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