On 5 May, the students and staff of Voronezh State University gathered in the park near the main university building to honour the veterans and commemorate those who lost their life in the Great Patriotic War.
The event started with the procession of the honour guard and a group of military students of VSU Military Training Centre who marched to the beat of drums to the memorial dedicated to the university staff and students who died during the Great Patriotic War.
In his welcoming speech the VSU rector, Dmitry Endovitsky, greeted the veterans and remembered the history of the university during the war years. The rector talked about holding a photo of his grandfather, Alexei Sobolev, who died during the war.
'Today we can see the process of the systematic distortion of historical facts and manipulation of moral and psychological values of the Russian nation. To oppose it we have to cherish our national memory and hold events aimed at fostering patriotism among the youth. We remember everybody and grieve for the heroes who died during the Great Patriotic War,' said Dmitry Endovitsky.
Ludmila Vladimirova, the chair of the Trade Union Committee of VSU congratulated the audience with the holiday:
'This holiday is associated with the heroic deeds of the great Soviet nation. It is the day when our eyes mist with happy tears. It is the day when we feel the pain of losses. Great responsibility rests with us – we have to protect the memory of the dead and to nip the attempts to distort the historical truth. May the memory of the heroes live forever and wish good health to our veterans!'
Among other speakers were the lecturer of the Reserve Officer Training Department, Boris Zhelyaznikov, and a first year student of the Faculty of Applied Mathematics, Informatics, and Mechanics, Ivan Panov.
Then the participants of the event paid tribute to the memory of those fallen in the war with a minute of silence and laid flowers at the memorial.
It should be said that Voronezh State University has long-standing traditions connected with this memorable day – Victory Day. For example, every year the patriotic club "Memory" organises a distance run. This year it started on 4 May at the main university building.