1934 rescued crew members of sunken icebreaker “Chelyuskin”. 1936 delivered equipment for Professor O. Yu. Shmidt’s expedition to Franz Josef Land and was first to fly across Barents Sea on great arctic flight Moscow-Franz Josef Land-Moscow.
1937 first to land on ice at North Pole. Helped search for Lenanevsky’s missing plane, making a number of polar flights under very arduous arctic conditions. 1941-1945 flew military missions, especially bomb raids on Berlin.
Deputy, Soviet of the Union, USSR Supreme Soviet of 1937 convocation. Until 1918 worked on father’s farm. 1918-1921 in Red Army, in transport branch then driver at airport.
1921-1925 aircraft mechanic, Moscow Airport. 1925-1928 flight mechanic, then civil aviation pilot, first in Kuban combatting locusts, then on Kazan-Sverdlovsk airmail line. 1928-1936 pilot on KhabarovskSakhalin line.
1936-1937 pilot on science expedition to North Pole region. 1937-1938 commanded flight detachment in Central Arctic for I. D. Papanin’s “Severny polyus” (North Pole) Drifting Research Station expedition. 1941-1945 in Soviet Air Force.
Since 1945 occupied with literature activities.