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After graduating from the Naval Academy in 1940, captain Grishchenko|
P.D. was appointed commander of "L-3" mine-lading vessel, which
coincided with the beginning of the WW II.
After graduating from the academy with honors, he expressed desire to
go back commanding the submarine, and was returned to the same
position he left prior to the academy.
His love for the sea and submarines was much stronger than his desire
to take a new vessel commanding position. The beginning of war, on
June 22, 1941, the L-3 submarine, also known by the name of
"Frunzevets", met in Libava (Liepaja), Lithiania, USSR
Grishchenko received orders to set a minefield nearby. It was a
complete success. Literally a few days later, two
powerful explosions thundered here, and the Germans lost two of their
loaded transports, "Egerau" and "Henny".
The tough early war days of 1941 "L-3's" were harsh, but much needed
fighting education. During that time, Grishchenko went out on 3
missions, destroying four enemy ships.
Each of the transports he sank were loaded with military supplies
equal in value to a full rifle regiment. So, in the first year of the
war Grishchenko sent an equivalent of an enemy division to the bottom
of the sea. In November 1942, the "L-3" submarine under the command of
Captain 3rd Rank P.D. Grishchenko was the first to visit the most
remote southwestern part of the Baltic Sea.
Under the enemy's nose, the submariners set underwater mine fields,
which brought down "Ostland" (2125 tons), "Hindenburg" (7880 tons),
"Dirschau" (762 tons), "Marie Ferdinant" (1757 tons), "Tristan"(1765
tons)" and Grundzess"(866 tons) transports. While overcoming
anti-submarine nets, the boat was rammed by the enemy ship and lost
both periscopes (commander and anti-aircraft), and, therefore, sailed
"blind" in the submerged state before returning to base.
It was impossible not to recognize Grishchenko's achievements
in the navy; after his departure, many experts noted his special
style or “handwriting”. Some of his submarine moves had a
tinge of genius.
He carried out his most famous salvo torpedo attacks in violation of
all Soviet fleet regulations and instructions. On August 18, 1942,
Grishchenko discovered a large German caravan through the periscope
and attacked it.
Two simultaneously launched torpedoes literally broke apart a tanker
with a displacement of fifteen thousand tons. A week later, with a
four-torpedo salvo, he sank two transports at once. During the war L-3
submarine under his command sank 28 enemy ships and support vessels.
Hero submariner Pyotr Denisovich Grishchenko passed away on 14 January
1991, in Moscow, where he was buried.