The boy - the hero of the battle for Belgrade!

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2 years ago
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His photograph has traveled the world. Even today, it provokes admiration - a small, tiny warrior who defiantly stands on the bumper in the face of impending evil. It entered the war albums and was irreplaceable in all publications as a symbol of hard days, great struggles and great resistance of the Serbian army in the Great War. The son of a refugee from Kordun, at the age of only 12, he defended Belgrade. He was the youngest soldier of the Great War, the legendary Archibald Rice wrote about him, he was personally promoted by King Peter, who was wounded six times. One war is too much, let alone two, and a world war. And Dragoljub Jelicic is a participant in both.

DRAGOLjUB Jeličić, the son of a refugee from Kordun, is actually a boy who was immortalized by a French photographer in the battles for the defense of Belgrade, and the picture shows him firing a rifle. It has long been thought that it was Momcilo Gavrić from Loznica, also a beardless kid, who joined the ranks of the Serbian army during the Great War. This enigma was removed by Dragoljub's grandson Djordje Njunjic from Niksic, who told "Novosti" that he has his grandfather's pictures in the family archive, and some of them, along with the already known one - how he shoots from the trench.

He was born in 1902, and since he was left without his whole family as a child, without anyone anywhere, in March 1912, he left for Belgrade. At first, he sold newspapers after his arrival, and on weekends he worked on the carousel. After the outbreak of the First Balkan War, he enlisted in the army, but was rejected due to age.

A little warrior with a big heart

The beginning of the First World War found Dragoljub in Belgrade. He took part in the defense of the Serbian capital, and it was there, on Kalemegdan, that he was immortalized forever in a photograph by a French reporter. Dragoljub also reached the battles in Mačva, Jadra, Drina… He was wounded on Mačkov kamen while replacing the dead machine gunner.

After the fall of Belgrade, he headed south with the Serbian army. King Peter I Karadjordjevic noticed him, and when he found out about his fate, he ordered that he be prepared and arranged as a real Serbian soldier. The word about him reached Archibald Rice, a Swiss doctor and writer, a man who spent the beginning of the twentieth century among Serbs, sharing both good and evil with these people. When he was wounded in the arm, they took out a bullet in the Nis hospital. He did not want to fall asleep for surgery. He endured it without a word - Rice wrote.

CAPTURED 47 ENEMY SOLDIERS!

Major Tankosic buys stars with his own money and promotes the boy to the rank of sub-sergeant. After a knightly battle near Zvornik, King Petar visits the wounded child and orders him to be transferred to the regular regiment. In the battle on Šušnjar, he was severely wounded and urgently transferred to the hospital. Among the wounded, he discovered and arrested an Austrian spy. For that feat, he was promoted to the rank of sergeant on the same day. After the victory near Lazarevac, Major Ilić immediately awarded him a gold medal for bravery. In the next battle, he captures 47 enemy soldiers. Another medal for bravery shone on his chest.

After another severe wound, he becomes the leader of the bombing department. In the battle on the Pusta Reka, he fought with a superior enemy, clearing the road from Lebane to Medvedja.

At the age of less than 14, Dragoljub was promoted to the rank of corporal by Regent Aleksandar Karađorđević, so that the war would end in the rank of sub-sergeant. That is how he entered the glorious history of this people. He was wounded six times in battles and was awarded the Gold Medal for Courage three times.

Dragoljub Jelicic also took part in the Second World War. It is known that he survived the Nazi casemates, and he welcomed the end of the war in a partisan uniform.

Ovaj veliki mali vojskovođa proveo je međuratno razdoblje u Beogradu, živeći daleko od očiju javnosti i ne spominjući svoja velika djela. Sloboda mu omogućuje da se napokon posveti svojoj velikoj ljubavi - glumi. Postao je članom Udruženja dramskih umjetnika Beograda, a "odbori koji život znače" odveli su ga u Jagodinsko pozorište, pozorišta u Skoplju, Tuzlu, Rijeku da bi glumačku karijeru završio u Narodnom pozorištu u Nikšiću. Umro je 1963. Dragoljub Jeličić bio je glumac, vrsni komičar i najmlađi srpski borac Prvog svjetskog rata.

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