Victory Day is the most unifying holiday in Russia, because there is hardly a family in the entire country that was not personally touched by the tragedy of the Second World War. The day is filled with joy, gratitude and celebration of veterans — of all wars, but especially The Greatest Generation. There are parades, air shows, fireworks, concerts, singing and dancing in public squares. It is a sea of flags and medals and flowers, as it is customary to present the warriors with red carnations. Yet a sense sadness belies the celebration: that with every year there is less of that generation with us, that their sacrifices and their lessons will be swallowed up by the fog of history.

Here’s to never forgetting.

Air Force parade and air show on the way to the Red Square

Veterans gather at the memorial parks throughout Moscow.

Cossack singing, people dancing, everybody cheering.

Huge crowd gathers for the concert and fireworks at Poklonnaya Gora (Bow-Down Hill) war memorial in the highest spot in Moscow.

Concert at Poklonnaya GoraConcert at Poklonnaya GoraFireworks at Poklonnaya Gora



    • I actually got some color too, having leftover FL tan helped not make it a burn 🙂
      The weather was BEYOND – and bc of it I did soooo much walking, first in the center, and then at Poklonnaya (which was MADNESS, and took forever getting back from bc of the crowds).

  1. ‘Love the photos and the sunny weather. I hear you re-the bitter-sweet event. We did a bit of celebrating yesterday too, but for the city of Berlin. We had a memorial event for the pilots who flew in food supplies for the people of West Berlin and my son got to represent Britain by reading one of the speeches of friendship.

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  3. I went to a Russian community Victory Day celebration in the small American town where my grandparents live. I thought I felt like crying when my grandpa told me that the previous year, they had had 10 more men to honor than that year. It scares me because memories are so poor, and deniers are so adamant.

    • It’s like that every year here, less and less survivors. But it is very encouraging that so many young people come, hopefully keeping the collective memory alive.

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