SOURCE: Air Recognition
The Serbian Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense Dr. Nebojsa Stefanovic and the Commander of the Air Force and Air Defense, Lieutenant General Dusko Zarkovic, attended on 21 May at the military airport “Colonel Pilot Milenko Pavlovic” the event “Trace in Infinity” which symbolically ended the MiG-21 life in the Serbian Air Force.
From 1962 to 1986, Serbia procured a total of 261 MiG-21s from the then Soviet Union. This supersonic aircraft of the second generation was produced in the largest numbers in the history of aviation – a total of 11,496 pieces in 32 versions. It has been used for six decades on four continents in the air forces of more than 60 countries and is still used in many of them nowadays.
Lt. Col. Dejan Beda, Assistant Operations Commander of the 204th Air Brigade, who spent many years in the cockpit of the MiG-21, reminded that the story of the “twenty units” is inextricably linked to the Batajnica airport because every specimen that ever arrived in our military aviation took off and landed on that runway.
The first unit armed with 41 MiG-21 F-13s was the 204th Fighter Aviation Regiment. By the end of 1964, Lap 204 had three squadrons armed with these planes. It is interesting that for the first four years of using this plane, there was no two-seater, but the pilots were trained and maintained on American-made TV-2 planes – Colonel Beda pointed out.
Borisa Mandic, a former military pilot instructor on MiG-21, greeted those gathered on behalf of the Aviation Foundation “Pilot Mihajlo Petrovic” and the Association of Supersonic Pilots. The legendary MiG-21 plane was symbolically greeted with a traditional water triumphal arch as part of its long service in Serbian military aviation.