German assault gun StuG-40 found in a swamp
In April 2002, search club «Arergard» found a abandoned German StuG-40 self-propelled artillery in the Pskov region, near the town of Velikie Luki. It was located and raised from a swamp.
How did the abandoned STG get there?
The self-propelled gun belonged to the Chevallerie operational group (Gruppe “Chevallerie”) of the Army Group Center. German armored forces were driven into a swampy area, where it was hit by a shell.
How was a fighting vehicle found?
According to a local resident who witnessed the same military operations, this self-propelled gun was hit and then stood on the ice of a frozen swamp. The hatches were open, and there were two small holes in the left side of the cabin, where four dead and bloodied German tankmen lay. This and other tanks sat untouched until spring when they fell through the thawing ice and disappeared forever.
The remains of the crew were still inside and transferred to a German collection team. The tank itself was transferred to the museum in Saratov, where it remains until this day.
What exactly is an StuG-40?
An assault gun is a form of self-propelled artillery which uses an infantry support gun mounted on a motorized chassis, normally on an armored fighting vehicle. Assault guns are designed to provide direct fire support for infantry attacks, especially against other infantry or fortified positions. The term is a literal translation of the German word Sturmgeschütz, which was applied to the first purpose-built assault gun, the StuG III, in 1940.
The process of extracting a self-propelled gun was completely filmed by members of Arergard search team