Igor Dobroff was born in the city of Leningrad, USSR. At age of 19, in May of 1978, he was drafted for two years to the Soviet Army; the Soviet Union had an universal conscription system.
He asked to be employed as a member of the VDV (Airborne forces), or the Soviet Airborne Division, and the request was granted. Igor started his military experience with a rank of Private with the Guard Airborne Division, or VDD, near the old Russian city of Pskov where he was enlisted as a rifleman with the Parachute Regiment (British influence). During his service Igor made three jumps including a night jump.
A year later Igor was transferred to the Artillery Airborne Regiment as a scout/radio operator with a rank of Efreitor (Corporal).
In 1980 the Soviet Army began troop deployment to the Democratic Republic of Afghanistan on a Peace-Keeping mission at which time Igor, his fellow soldiers and officers of the Guard Airborne Division, volunteered for the mission. (*a good movie reference is the hit Russian film '9 ROTA' although it depicts a later period but with same general concept).
Igor and his comrades were deployed to the Bahrein Airbase, Afghanistan in January 1980 as members of the Artillery Reconnaissance Unit with a rank of a Jr. Sergeant. Sgt. Dobroff was wounded during a combat mission and evacuated from Afghanistan back to the USSR in April, 1980 to a military hospital in Tashkent, in Soviet Central Asia. In late June of 1980 he was discharged from the Soviet Army.
After his military service, Igor Dobroff enrolled in the maritime marine college and later worked as a Navigator for the Soviet Merchant Fleet where he earned the rank of Lieutenant in the Soviet Navy Reserve.
As a history enthusiast, Lt. Dobroff earned his BA degree in History from the Moscow University in 1991; the same year the Soviet Union ceased to exist.
Igor has lived in the United States since 1996.
Igor received Soviet military decorations for valor and for service in the Democratic Republic of Afghanistan.