Ing. Josef Čechák

* 1930

  • "There was an inspection of the members of the Communist party. And since I was accepted for a few years, about two or three years, the individual members were screened. And me, that I was excellent in physical education, I led the youth, so I had a nice reference there. That was one review committee. But in two months, a new investigation committee was elected because it was said at the Regional committee of the Communist party that it was not possible that at least about 30% of the people who fought against the occupation, who did not agree, that they must be expelled. Because they were against the Russians taking us. So, the new review committee came, the other members, and with the same reference that I had, including all the good things I did, that I lead the youth in the village and I am also a member of parliament - I worked as an executive in the finance committee - so they recommended me to issue the Communist party, and the other one then said that they would not give me consent to the exchange of new credentials."

  • "He made boxes for electrical wiring for the cowsheds. That's what one Minister ordered there. This is the name of two peasants: Ministers. And he said in the pub that he made the boxes for the Ministers. And the one who heard it reported it, and then the investigation took place in Krčmaň. But that would be a long talk, exactly as it was all, but it simply did not prove that Kopka would be able to make such boxes. And that the road was misled, that it was made in Prague. And those boxes were not supposed to explode, but to cause a stir in the government that there are such people who want to remove (ministers)."

  • "In January, it is important to remind people to know that the Auschwitz concentration camp was transported. I was on the track again to see the track master, a short distance, about ten meters from the tracks leading to Vienna, to Břeclav. And the men from the warehouse came to tell us, 'Come and see.' A freight train arrived in mid-January, it was freezing, a freight train arrived, and there were at least fifty prisoners in open wagons. They had a blanket over their heads and only eyes were sticking out. And as we came near, they called to us, 'Brot, brot!' That is bread, bread. The trackmaster turned to me, 'Do you have any food, do you have any snacks?' 'Sure, I have lunch there.' I went to the office, took the bread, spread with greasy lard in between, because we could kill. We had a field meter, so we killed a pig during the war. He took it, walked around the car, but the Germans guarded it. So, he took it and threw it between them. What were two slices of bread for so many prisoners? In open cars, in winter."

  • "A lot of American pilots died. Planes fell down, bombers and also German fighters. Only in our territory, on the border with Kokory, there was a heavy bomber and then near Troubek, near Tovačov. And the German plane Messerschmitt or Focke Wulf, if it was it, it flew. The pilot was probably wounded, so he flew over our building and sank a short distance behind the garden. It exploded as if a bomb had fallen there. When we looked at it, we saw pieces of guts, flesh along the walls of the big hole. And after a while, because we have high water there, it filled with water."

  • "In two years, a car came to Krčmaň once, just when the Communist Party had a meeting. They left the car down by the pond, people back then still drove on the old road. They went and get Mr. Kopka. And he had to go to the car with them. But from the meeting that was at the municipal office, or in the room for the municipality, a public meeting, a gendarme, a policeman, returned to Týnec. He had an office in Týnec. And when he was driving down from Krčmaň and saw the car standing there, he was going against the car and the car lit up the car and he saw that it had an overlapped car number on the back. When he stood, he uncovered it and marked the number. And then he went on to Týnec. And before he turned to Týnec, he saw a car following him, so he turned to Grygov and jumped down there and hid somewhere in the bushes. The car went to Týnec to the gendarme station and they found out that no one was there, so they drove towards the border to northern Moravia."

  • "The second plane was in the woods, and when we went there to see it, we saw German pilot on the road, who jumped from the plane. But he probably jumped up late, he was low above the ground. The parachute did not open, he was wounded. We saw the head in the hull being pushed down. We saw on his hand, his flight watch, it worked, it was fine. There were Germans in Brodek, so they went around and collected the wounded and investigated what had happened. So, the second raid was air combat. It was horrible."

  • Full recordings
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    Olomouc, 31.08.2020

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    Olomouc, 07.09.2020

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    duration: 01:06:51
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Our community stuck together during each regime

Josef Čechák twenty years old or so
Josef Čechák twenty years old or so
photo: archive of the witness

Josef Čechák was born on July 2, 1930 in the village Majetín in the Olomouc region. He grew up in the family of tailor Josef and Marie, née Nováková. He had two older brothers and a younger sister. At the age of fourteen, he became an apprentice at the railway in Přerov, where in January 1945 he witnessed the evacuation of the Auschwitz concentration camp. At the station in Přerov, a train stopped with several dozen wagons full of prisoners, who probably continued to Mauthausen concentration camp. He also experienced bombing in Přerov, and at the end of the war he witnessed the shooting of a German partisan officer directly in Majetín. After liberation, he stayed at the track and after being transferred to Olomouc, he became a technician for the railway superstructure and later also a line management planner. From 1951 to 1953 he completed military service in Žilina and Olomouc. He completed his high school diploma at the Railway Construction Industrial School in Letohrad and then graduated from the so-called Business Institute, which replaced university professional studies. He then worked as an independent railway engineer until his retirement in 1990 and became a recognized expert. He is the author of a number of improvements and also a patent holder. Between 1981 and 1989, the witness tried several times to contact the State Security, but no cooperation took place. Josef was involved in football since his early youth - he played actively until he was fifty years old and held a number of positions at the owner’s football club. He also worked in communal politics, both before and after November 1989. Its name is connected with the construction of a football field and with the reconstruction of the Sokol gymnasium in Majetín. He is the author of a number of professional publications, he also wrote the history of the Majetín football and Sokol club. He enjoys good health and in 2020 he lived in Majetín.