Sergei Kirov, one of the most prominent party and state leaders in the Soviet Union in 1920-1930, a charismatic personality and close companion of Joseph Stalin, was murdered on 1st December 1934 aged 48.
Sergei Mironovich Kirov (real name Sergei Kostrikov) was born on 27 March 1886 in the city of Urzhum, Vyatka province (now Kirov region) in a middle-class family. Sergei lost his parents at an early age and was raised, along his two sisters Anna and Elizabeth, by his grandmother Melania Avdeyevna. He was sent to the "House of Charity for young orphans" and in 1901 he graduated from City College. He later joined the lower Mechanical and Technical School of Kazan.