The date of July 17 is considered the Day of Foundation of Naval Aviation of the Navy of the Russian Federation. As a holiday, it was established by order of the Commander-in-Chief of the Russian Navy No. 253 of July 15, 1996.
On July 17, 1916, Russian pilots won aerial combat over the Baltic Sea during the First World War. Four M-9 seaplanes of the Orlitsa aircraft carrier of the Baltic Fleet took to the air and entered into battle with four German aircraft. The victory in this air battle marked the beginning of the history of Russian naval aviation.
During the Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945, fleet aviation became the first to strike at the very heart of the enemy, and the main threat to the fascist invaders in battles at sea. During the years of the Great Patriotic War, Soviet naval pilots made more than 35,000 sorties, destroyed more than 5,500 enemy aircraft in the air and at airfields.