Hana Bedrníková

* 1937

  • "She always talked about someone coming in and bringing something, and she didn't even know who it was from. Or somebody brought some money. For example, Mrs. Mandátová from Červený Kostelec, her husband worked in a joint stock company as a worker and she was a housewife and had a small farm, she had rabbits and a goat. My brother was excited about the rabbits, I was afraid of the goat. She thought the goat's milk would do me good, but for me it was unimaginable. But she never gave up and cared. And always at Christmas she went round all those textile entrepreneurs in Červený Kostelec, took me by the hand and negotiated that I brought home some fabric or something practical for household. - You told me your mother used to find groceries outside the door? Yes, maybe someone brought flour or something long-lasting. And she said that it was usually the railwaymen who delivered aid to these families, the aid was organized by Sokol."

  • "I'd say that's the last memory I have of my dad. The Gestapo came, there were a lot of them in the kitchen, such big people, I didn't know who they were, it was before a storm, such an oppressive afternoon, and they were looking for Dad. He was across the street at the barber's, and that's where they went to get him. They brought him home. Mum and we didn't know what it was about because Daddy had tried to make sure we knew as little as possible, just in case. Mum probably suspected, but she also didn't know what kind of resistance it was and who Dad was associating with. It was more that they were socializing as Sokol members and acquaintances, but that there might be contacts that could endanger the family, we had no idea. We kids didn't at all. Dad stroked us and we parted and we never saw him again."

  • "We were quite surprised that the rehabilitation came back to the desk of the judge who had sentenced the stepfather. That was quite disappointing for us, but the rehabilitation did come. - And did the judge give any reason for it? - It was in the court instructions that the judgement was going back to the same court that had sentenced him. And coincidentally, the judge was still working there, so it came to his desk. - What did your mum say? - We were disillusioned, but for the judge it was a matter of course. They even told Mum that because Dad had been operated in Pankrác at the time of the trial, he had stomach ulcers, that at that time they were waiting whether Mr Marek would survive the operation."

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    Hradec Králové, 14.06.2022

    duration: 01:18:51
    media recorded in project Příběhy regionu - HRK REG ED
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Dad was brought in by the Gestapo, he stroked us and we never saw him again

Hana Bedrníková, née Vokatá, around 1945
Hana Bedrníková, née Vokatá, around 1945
photo: archiv pamětníka

Hana Bedrníková was born on 16 May 1937 in Prague and spent the first year and a half of her life with her parents Pavla and Jaroslav Vokatý and her older brother Vladimír in Trutnov, where her father worked at the post office. In 1938, her father was mobilised and her mother had to leave Trutnov with her children in haste after the occupation of the Sudetenland. Friends from Sokol found them accommodation in Červený Kostelec with a local butcher. Father Jaroslav Vokatý continued to work at the post office. He was active in the resistance organization S21B, which was involved in hiding the paratroopers from Silver A. However, the Gestapo discovered the group during the period after the assassination of Heydrich and after a series of arrests they came for Jaroslav Vokatý on 1 July 1942. A week after the end of martial law, on 9 July 1942, he was executed together with his resistance colleagues at the Zámeček in Pardubice. The family was left without resources, but until the end of the war they were supported by people from the Sokol organization. After the war, her mother remarried to Jindřich Marek, a member of the Western army during World War II, who was then persecuted for his past and fully rehabilitated only after 1989. Hana graduated from the Trutnov grammar school, but she was not admitted to university. She was active in sports, excelling especially in ball games. She married in 1958 and moved with her husband to Hradec Králové in 1964, where she worked at the intercity telephone exchange. She divorced in 1968 and had two children from her second relationship. After her maternity leave, she joined the telegraph exchange as a manager. She retired in 1991. In 2022 she was living in Hradec Kralové.