Milan Rastislav Štefánik biography
Štefánik was born on 21st July 1880 in Košariská. He came from a poor family, but his parents loved him very much. He went to school in his birth-place. He studied at gymnasiums in Bratislava ,Šoporni and Sarvaš. In 1889 he studied in a college in Prague. In Prague Štefánik met T. G. Masaryk, who was a professor of University of Prague. Štefánik, who studied philosophical school, became a follower of Masaryk ideas. Later when Štefánik finished his study in University of Prague , he went to Paris, because he didn’t find work in Slovakia.
In Paris he met a professor J. Jansen, who was a director in the Meudon observatory. After two years of work in observatory, when J. Jansen died, he stayed without work. In 1908, he began to travel around the world. He visited the U.S.A, Panama, Equator, Brazil, Russia, Australia and meanwhile he returned home in April 1913, when his father died. After the long journey he returned to France. Before the first World War Štefánik obtained French fiscal nationality.
In the war he joined French army. In 1915 he fought in the Serbian front. After the short time he became the French admiral. In 1916 when he was injured badly, he returned to Paris. In Paris he met some important people from Czechoslovakia namely E. Beneš and his ex-professor T. G. Masaryk , who fought for Czechoslovakian independence. Here he began to organise Czechoslovak legion in the war against Germany and Austria- Hungarian monarchy. He spent three years of hard work for Czechoslovakia and during this time he met some important people from the world polities.
Unfortunately French general M. R. Štefánik’s plane crashed next to Bratislava, while he was returning home. On 4th May 1919. Nowadays the airport of Bratislava has the name upon his honour.
Štefánik is a hero in Slovak history. .