The order of the Supreme Commander of May 1 1945 read:
“... To hold military salutes in the capitals of the Union republics..., as well as in Hero Cities: Leningrad, Stalingrad, Sevastopol and Odessa.”
A 20 year long pause followed. Only later, on May 8 1965, the Presidium of the Supreme Council of the Soviet Union issued an order approving the Provision on the Honorary Title of Hero City. On the same day, the Order of Lenin and the Golden Star Medal were awarded to those four cities, as well as Moscow and Kyiv. By the same decree, the Brest Fortress was awarded a unique title of “Hero Fortress.” Construction of obelisks displaying the awards and the text of the Decree was ordered in all Hero Cities. Later, Minsk, Novorossiysk, Tula, Smolensk and Murmansk were recognized as hero cities. Other cities, towns, settlements and villages where the frontline ran as well as the entire country that had conquered Fascism had been left behind the ranks of awardees.