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Running In

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 "December 8th, 1944

Description of the running in process of rifle regiment personnel from the 60th Guards Pavlograd Order of the Red Banner Division with SU-76M SPGs conducted on November 11th, 1944.

Based on the enciphered telegram delivered from the 32nd Rifle Corps on November 6th, 1944, the division performed running in of rifle regiment personnel with SU-76M SPGs.

Running in was performed on a separate training ground prepared for each regiment.

Regimental grounds were prepared with trenches according to the attached diagram to run in personnel of the 180th Guards Rifle Regiment. A commission led by regiment commanders and composed of the divisional engineer  and commander of the 65th Guards Independent Self Propelled Gun Battalion performed a test run at 16:00 on November 9th, 1944, in and discovered that the trenches collapsed when driven over due to sandy terrain and were unsuitable for putting people in. 

By 10:00 on November 10th, 1944, sections of the trenches were reinforced as indicated on the attached diagram. A subsequent run in showed that they were fully suitable for their purpose.

On November 11th, 1944, the three rifle regiments ran in 3821 personnel without any incidents. The regiment commanders, divisional engineer, commander of the 65th Guards SPG Battalion and the division deputy commander for training were responsible for the procedure.

Two trenches dug by the 180th Guards Rifle Regiment had 4 sections reinforced with logs that fit 7 people each about 100 meters from one another. Running in was performed by one SPG that drove around in an ellipse over all four reinforced sections. The 180th Guards Rifle Regiment sent 1115 men to be run in, one SPG spent 3 hours and 30 minutes on the task. Each man was run in once. 

Initially, when the troops were faced with running in they were hesitant in the face of the advancing SU, which can be explained by a lack of trust in the stability of the trench. After the first rounds showed that the trench was stable, the troops lost their fear and met the advancing SU calmly and confidently, attacking it with dummy grenades on approach and as it was headed away.

Personnel who went through running in later stated that they were certain that tanks and SPGs were not so frightening. A soldier in a trench could let them go by and then destroy them with grenades.

The running in of the personnel is a notable training method to promote necessary qualities in soldiers.

Chief of Staff of the 60th Guards Rifle Division, Guards Colonel Okhlovistin
Guards Major Khrenov"

Via Yuri Pasholok


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