US remembers Soviet K-77 submarine

The United States has opened a week devoted to the legendary Soviet K-77 submarine, which is currently an exhibit at the USS Saratoga Museum Foundation in Providence (Rhode Island).

The idea to organise a week devoted to the submarine, which participated in the shooting of the film K-19: The Widowmaker by film director Kathryn Bigelow, belongs to professor of the local university Sergei Khrushchev, the son of famous Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev. Sergei Khrushchev earlier worked for the Design Bureau of academician Vladimir Chelomei where missiles for the K-77 submarine were developed.

K-77 crewmembers headed by retired Rear Admiral Bogdan Malyarchuk have come to meet the once threatening Soviet missile carrier known in the US as Juliett. Mr. Malyarchuk began his career as the senior assistant of the K-77 commander.

According to Mr. Malyarchuk, the crewmembers have brought the USSR Navy's flag with them and are going to hoist it on the submarine.

The film K-19: The Widowmaker shot in 2002 produced a good impression on the former submariner.

"The film is full of respect and I'm glad that our submarine participated in it," said Mr. Malyarchuk.

Another former crewmember, captain 1st rank Vladimir Zaitsev, is also participating in the festivities.

"We have always thought the Americans are decent rivals," said Mr. Zaitsev and confessed he would have never believed it that he would be talking to his enemies about the cold war.

The K-77 submarine became part of the Soviet Northern Fleet in 1965 and was designed for fighting US aircraft carriers, which included another exhibit of the museum - the USS Saratoga. In winter 1976, a technical malfunction caused fire onboard the submarine killing two crewmembers. Later the submarine was in Finland and was afterwards bought for the USS museum.

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