The first Kazakh pilot, navigator, and sniper Khiuaz Dospanova in the Great Patriotic War made 300 combat missions. She was one of the "Night witches" - the legendary women's night bomber regiment. She took an active part in the liberation of Kuban, Taman, Novorossiysk, Crimea, Belarus, and Poland. The fearless pilot was seriously injured twice. Despite everything, she returned to the front, and met Victory near Berlin.
The legendary pilot Khiuaz Dospanova was born on May 15, 1922, in the village of Ganyushkino, Guryev region. In 1940, she graduated with honors from school № 1 of Uralsk. In the same year, she successfully completed her studies at the flying club, after which she went to Moscow to enter the Zhukovsky Air Force Academy. She failed. Then the girl decided to apply to the First Moscow Medical Institute, and she was accepted without exams.
In 1941, the war began. Khiuaz Dospanova, along with other girls, went to the aviation college near Saratov and entered the navigational department. On October 26, 1941, the future pilots arrived at the place of formation of the regiments in the city of Engels, where they completed an accelerated course of training in the Military aviation school of pilots.
Khiuaz remembered her first combat mission for the rest of her life. The "Dragonfly" of Katya Piskareva and Khiuaz Dospanova came under anti-aircraft fire. But they completed the task. Kh. Dospanova was first wounded in battles in the Caucasus. A terrible tragedy occurred on April 1, 1943. Two planes, in one of which was flying Khiuaz, simultaneously returned from a combat mission. During the approach to the landing, due to the switched-off air navigation lights - to disguise, the planes collided in the air. Three pilots died. At first, Khiuaz also had no signs of life, but then accidentally the doctors noticed the movement of her eyelashes…
The girl's life was saved, but gangrene started on her legs. She was transported to Essentuki with her limbs in a cast. The operation was performed, and after the treatment, Khiuaz returned to combat formation. She could not get on the plane on her own, her friends helped her. And when she returned from a mission, she could not get out of the combat vehicle for a long time. As a result, she was transferred to the ground service – she headed the communications headquarters.
During its combat activity, Khiuaz Dospanova made 300 sorties. Together with her regiment, she "flew" to Germany. Only in Germany, "Night witches" made more than two thousand flights. In total, during the war, they dropped almost three million kilograms of bombs and 26 thousand incendiary shells. For bravery and courage, Khiuaz Dospanova was awarded the Order of the Red Star, the Order of the Patriotic War II degree, the Order of the Red Banner, the medals "For the defense of the Caucasus", "For the liberation of Warsaw", "For the victory over Germany".
In 1945, Khiuaz Dospanova returned home to Uralsk as a disabled person of the second group. At the age of 23, she entered the Higher Party School in Almaty. She created a family, had two sons. She was a secretary of the Central Committee of the Komsomol of Kazakhstan, Deputy of the Supreme Council of the Kazakh SSR, Secretary of the Almaty city Committee of the party. At the age of 37, the legendary pilot Kh. Dospanova retired. She described her memories of the war and combat flights in the book "Under the command of Raskova".
In 2004, by decree of the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan, Khiuaz Dospanova received the highest award of Kazakhstan – the Gold Star "Halyk Kakharmany". The brave pilot passed away in 2008 at the age of 86.
The street in Almaty, as well as the Sports Palace and the International Airport in Atyrau are named after Khiuaz Dospanova. A documentary film "Khiuaz Dospanova. Time to say thank you" was made about the famous military pilot from Kazakhstan in 2005.
On May 7, 2010, a monument to the pilot was unveiled in Atyrau. In 2017, the sculpture "Glorious daughters of the Kazakh people" was opened in Uralsk on the Manshuk Mametova square. Heroes of the Great Patriotic War – Manshuk Mametova, Aliya Moldagulova and Khiuaz Dospanova are immortalized in bronze.