An article on the Russian-Ukrainian (non-Jewish) genealogy blog yesterday described the update and provided hints on its use by English speakers.
The URL is https://lostrussianfamily.wordpress.com/2020/04/04/major-update-to-wwii-database-honors-75th-victory-anniversary/
A couple of observations.
The 25 million records were added not yesterday, but most likely in previous several months. Most, if not all archives in Russia and Ukraine are closed now because of the Wuhan2019 virus pandemic.
It appears that the https://pamyat-naroda.ru/ web site combines data from several other databases, e.g. obd-memorial, which listed only those who were killed or MIA.
A very important addition to the database is the collection of 1985 award records of the surviving War veterans. There are no scanned images of the original documents, only the database records. In the early 1985, The Supreme Soviet passed the law to award all living war veterans with the Order of Patriotic War. For a number of people whose other records were misplaced or lost during the war this may be the only paper trail available to genealogists.
Thus, about two months ago we discovered a record of a man whose fate was unknown to his relatives in the West all these years after the war. (This was a 100% match: misspelled but recognizable name, correct birth date and birthplace). We suggested the genealogist to write to the archives asking for the man’s 1985 address so his family could be contacted, but the archives are closed now and we don’t know what has happed to that inquiry.
Upon reading the article, we reopened a “cold case” of a man, who was presumably executed by the KGB after the war and for whom no documents were ever found. His name showed up in the same 1985 record collection. (Partial match: same name, unknown patronymics, birth year is off by one, same birthplace). Again, the possibility to locate this man’s 1985 address, hence his family is real.
Stay well everyone! Happy Passover
Boris Feldblyum boris@...