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Marie Ljalková in March 1943
|Born||3 December 1920|
|Died||7 November 2011 (aged 90)|
Brno, Czech Republic
|Allegiance|| Soviet Union|
|Years of service||1942–1953|
|Unit||First Czechoslovak Independent Field Battalion|
|Battles/wars||World War II|
|Awards||Order of the Red Star|
Czechoslovakian War Cross
Order of the White Lion
Ljalková (born Petrušáková) was born in Horodenka, Poland (today in Ukraine) to a family of Volhynian Czechs. She lost her parents at the age of 12 and then lived with her aunt in Stanisławów (today Ivano-Frankivs'k, Ukraine) where she met her first husband, Michal Ljalko. After the World War she remarried twice.
Her first combat experience came during the three-day Battle of Sokolovo (March 8–11, 1943) when she was credited with killing seven German soldiers, earning her immediate ace status. Her performance was even noticed by Nazi anti-Czechoslovak propaganda in the occupied Czech lands (in order to stress the outlandish character of the Czechoslovak military unit.).
After the war, she studied medicine and worked as a military doctor in Olomouc and at the Central Military Hospital in Prague. She later moved to Brno hospital where she met her second husband, Václav Lastovecký. She eventually attained the rank of colonel, but due to health problems she left the army and started to work as a tourist guide for Russian speaking tourists. She spent the rest of her life in Brno.