Maksim Purkayev

Maksim Alexeyevich Purkayev (Russian: Максим Алексеевич Пуркаев; August 14 (26), 1894, in the village of Nalitovo, Russian Empire – January 1, 1953, Moscow) was a Soviet military leader, reaching service rank of Army General.

Maksim Purkayev
Maxim Purkayev 1940s.jpg
Born26 August [O.S. 14 August] 1894
Nalitovo, Alatyrsky Uyezd, Simbirsk Governorate, Russian Empire
Died1 January 1953(1953-01-01) (aged 58)
Moscow, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union
Years of service
  • 1915–1917
  • 1918–1953
RankArmy general
Commands held
Battles/warsWorld War I

Russian Civil War World War II

Bundesarchiv Bild 183-2004-1104-500, General Purkajew.jpg


Purkayev was conscripted into the Imperial Russian Army in 1915, and reached the rank of praporshchik before joining the Red Army in 1918. He became a member of the Communist Party in 1919. During the Russian Civil War he served in the capacity of a company and battalion commander, and after completing the Vystrel officer training course in 1923, he served as a regimental commander (24th Rifle Division, staff officer and commander of a division until 1936 when he commenced studies at the Frunze Military Academy.

From 1938 Purkayev served as the Chief of Staff of the Belorussian Military District, as the Soviet military attaché in Berlin at the start of the Second World War in 1939, and participated in planning of the Soviet invasion of Poland. From July 1940, Purkayev served as the Chief of Staff of the Kiev Special Military District, and from the start of the Soviet-German War serving as the Chief of Staff of the Southwestern Front (June–July 1941), and later the 60th Army and 3rd Shock Army. In 1942–43 he served as commander of the Kalinin Front and from April 1943, the Far Eastern Front (from 1945 2nd Far Eastern Front). From September 1945 to January 1947 Purkayev served as the commanding officer of the Far Eastern Military District during which time he was nominated to the Highest Soviet of USSR (1946–1950).

From June 1947 Purkayev was the Chief of Staff and 1st Deputy of Chief Commander of the Far Eastern Forces. From July 1952 to his death Purkayev served as the Head of Higher Education Directorate of the Ministry of Defence of USSR.

Honours and awardsEdit

Maksim Purkayev was decorated with two Orders of Lenin (incl. 14 November 1943; "For exemplary fulfillment of the leadership of the Red Army mobilization, formation, acquisition and training of units and formations"), four Orders of the Red Banner, Order of Suvorov (1st class), Order of Kutuzov (1st class), and numerous medals.


  • Zalessky, K.A., Stalin's Empire: Biographical encyclopaedic dictionary, Moscow, Veche, 2000, (Russian: Залесский К.А. Империя Сталина. Биографический энциклопедический словарь. Москва, Вече, 2000)