Soviet partisan, and a Hero of the Soviet Union
Zoya Kosmodemyanskaya (September 13, 1923 – November 29, 1941) was a Soviet partisan, and a Hero of the Soviet Union (awarded posthumously). She is one of the most revered martyrs of the Soviet Union. In 1929 the family moved to Siberia for fear of persecution. In 1930 they moved to Moscow. Kosmodemyanskaya joined the Komsomol in 1938. In October 1941, still a high school student in Moscow, she volunteered for a partisan unit. At the village of Obukhovo near Naro-Fominsk, Kosmodemyanskaya and other partisans crossed the front line and entered territory occupied by the Germans. They mined roads and cut communication lines.
Did You Know?
On September 13, 2008, during the celebration of 85th anniversary since her birth a proposal was made that the Russian Orthodox Church should canonize Zoya. In the absence of any evidence that Kosmodemyanskaya chose death rather than renouncing her faith or even that she was a believing Christian, the Russian Orthodox Church has not yet taken any action on this proposal.
Other interesting facts:
The Kosmodemyansky family name was constructed by joining the names of Saints Cosmas and Damian. Her final words were purported to be "Comrades! Why are you so gloomy? I am not afraid to die! I am happy to die for my people!" and to the Germans, "You'll hang me now, but I am not alone. There are two hundred million of us. You can't hang us all."