Ukraine’s Zelenskyy pays tribute to legendary pilot ‘Juice’ who died in mid-air crash


Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has actually commemorated a fighter pilot who was credited with safeguarding Kyiv in the early days of the Russian intrusion prior to he passed away in a midair crash throughout a fight objective.

Maj. Andriy Pilshchykov, who passed the call indication “Juice,” assisted Ukraine “a lot,” Zelenskyy stated in a Telegram post, including that the crash that eliminated 2 other pilots, Maj. Vyacheslav Minka and Maj. Sergey Prokazhin, was a “catastrophe.”

” Ukraine will always remember anybody who protected Ukraine’s complimentary sky,” Zelenskyy included. “May they constantly be kept in mind!”

Pilshchykov, a member of the 40 th Tactical Aviation Division, was charged with countering Russian attacks on the country’s capital throughout the Kyiv offensive in the very first 2 months of what Moscow calls its “unique military operation.”

Ukrainian flying force representative Yuriy Ihnat stated in a different post on Facebook that Pilshchykov was “a young officer with exceptional understanding and mega skill,” including that he “imagined F-16 s in the Ukrainian sky.”

Pilshchykov, Ihnat stated, “provided lots of interviews to Western media, due to the fact that he understood English well, and most significantly– he comprehended the subject of discussion, what can and need to be discussed for Ukraine.”

The Ukrainian flying force stated in a declaration that the pilots were eliminated Friday, after 2 L-39 fight fitness instructor airplane clashed in midair over the Zhytomyr area in northern Ukraine. An examination has actually been released, it included.

News of Pilshchykov’s death came less than a week after Danish and Dutch legislators revealed that they both would provide Ukraine with F-16 fighter jets after Washington okayed in August to move the effective U.S.-made warplanes.

Denmark assured 19 of its jets, while the Netherlands vowed 42 last Sunday.

The fighters are unquestionably an upgrade for a nation that has actually been utilizing aging Soviet-era battle airplanes and has actually been pushed into waves of susceptible ground attacks.

Though Ihnat, the flying force representative, stated the F-16 will “entirely alter the course of battle actions,” experts have actually cautioned that they may not make a substantial effect on the battleground, with the timeline for their release uncertain and an absence of air assistance currently a significant handicap for the Ukrainian armed force’s attack versus Russian defenses

Mechanics, engineers and pilots require to be trained over numerous months to run the advanced jets, implying it might be till next summer season at the earliest for squadrons to be all set for fight.

Moscow has actually consistently condemned the guarantee of F-16 s as an escalation of the dispute.

President Joe Biden’s choice to license allies to start training Ukrainian pilots in how to run the warplanes can be found in May– prior to permission was offered to utilize them in the war.

Pilshchykov and the 40 th Tactical Aviation Division mostly utilized Russian-made MiG-29 s, twin-engine fighter airplane created by the Soviet Union, which initially went into usage in 1983.

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