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Russia: 'Flying was his dream' - schoolteacher remembers Russian pilot killed in Syria01:47

Russia: 'Flying was his dream' - schoolteacher remembers Russian pilot killed in Syria

Russian Federation, Voronezh
February 5, 2018 at 22:56 GMT -00:00 · Published

The former teacher of the late Roman Filipov, whose plane was shot down during combat in Syria, recalled what the pilot had been like as a student, speaking from Voronezh, Monday.

Filipov studied at school No. 85 for 10 years. In an interview, his class teacher Lyudmila Lazareva recalled how he had been motivated and responsible as a student, explaining that she is still shocked by the news of Filipov's death.

Lazareva described Roman as a very decent and intelligent person adding, "He lived in honesty and in fairness. He never hid behind others".

She recalled how Filipov had always been determined to fly, saying, "When we were talking about choosing a future profession in the 11th grade, he immediately said, 'I want to fly, this is my dream.'”

Filipov finished school in 2001, after which he was accepted to the Armavir Centre of the Krasnodar Higher Military Aviation School.

According to the Russian Ministry of Defence, Filipov's jet was “attacked by a short-range man-portable air defence system (MANPADS/MPADS) while flying over the Idlib de-escalation zone to monitor a ceasefire.”

Commander of the Russian Aerospace Forces Sergei Surovikin said Filipov had attempted to keep the plane in the air, but was forced to eject. He landed by parachute under heavy fire from the militant-held village of Tell-Debes, eventually falling in what Surovikin described as an "unequal battle" with militants.

"Seriously wounded, the officer blew himself up with a grenade when he was some several dozen metres away from the militants," the Commander added.

The 33-year-old pilot has posthumously been honoured with the Hero of the Russian Federation award.

Russia: 'Flying was his dream' - schoolteacher remembers Russian pilot killed in Syria01:47
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The former teacher of the late Roman Filipov, whose plane was shot down during combat in Syria, recalled what the pilot had been like as a student, speaking from Voronezh, Monday.

Filipov studied at school No. 85 for 10 years. In an interview, his class teacher Lyudmila Lazareva recalled how he had been motivated and responsible as a student, explaining that she is still shocked by the news of Filipov's death.

Lazareva described Roman as a very decent and intelligent person adding, "He lived in honesty and in fairness. He never hid behind others".

She recalled how Filipov had always been determined to fly, saying, "When we were talking about choosing a future profession in the 11th grade, he immediately said, 'I want to fly, this is my dream.'”

Filipov finished school in 2001, after which he was accepted to the Armavir Centre of the Krasnodar Higher Military Aviation School.

According to the Russian Ministry of Defence, Filipov's jet was “attacked by a short-range man-portable air defence system (MANPADS/MPADS) while flying over the Idlib de-escalation zone to monitor a ceasefire.”

Commander of the Russian Aerospace Forces Sergei Surovikin said Filipov had attempted to keep the plane in the air, but was forced to eject. He landed by parachute under heavy fire from the militant-held village of Tell-Debes, eventually falling in what Surovikin described as an "unequal battle" with militants.

"Seriously wounded, the officer blew himself up with a grenade when he was some several dozen metres away from the militants," the Commander added.

The 33-year-old pilot has posthumously been honoured with the Hero of the Russian Federation award.

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