The Finns, seeking restitution for the Winter War of 1939, had erupted across the borders and breached the Soviet Karelian front even as the crisis to the south of Leningrad came. In a desperate attempt to salvage something and form a new defense line along the Sestra River, orders went out to break off and retreat southward. One such unit was the 131st Border Battalion, which was to serve as a rearguard. At 1530, orders arrived releasing them to save themselves. . .if they could. Behind them a bakery was on fire, the town hall was ablaze, and ammunition was dwindling. Nevertheless, their young officers organized a fighting withdrawal towards the hills in an attempt to reach newly established lines.