Anna Čechová

* 1933

  • "So in the basement we were experiencing, we were crying as kids, we were screaming, it was terrible. And even when we were still here at these neighbours of ours across the street, as there is a telephone here, there was also a small house and grandpa was looking for... They came, they had a blue veil tied up and they brought us: 'Children, I bring you sugar from the wedding.' They had it stored in this big chamber, when it was all baked and it was all baked and all the meat was ready, so they had this big chamber and it was all in that chamber, only as the shooting was going on and all the turmoil, the plaster just fell into the sugar and the meat, so it was all that, and they brought us, Grandpa brought us the sugar, I mean the cakes, and it was all sand! It was so crunchy. Well, but us kids, we'd pick it over and pick it out and what there was, we'd eat it and stuff, we were glad we had dessert."

  • "So there we were, there were, I think, about forty of us in that cellar, but it was really war by then, there was shooting. We couldn't go out at all, my mother always went out in the morning before it got light and in the evening when it got dark they went to milk the cows. We had two cows, so they went to milk the cows and brought milk to the cellar and we as children and they did too, so we actually had that livelihood there, so that's how we lived. Well, but then it was, it was about the third or fourth day that we were there in the cellar at the top of the hill and my dad came and said, 'Well, kids, we don't have a house anymore, it's gone.' But fortunately the cattle, it kind of got wiped out and the cattle stayed there, so at least we had that livelihood."

  • "So we kept hearing this rumbling, you could hear the rumbling all the time, and even when the guys got together, we were like kids listening. 'Well, it's already in the Carpathians, it's already in the Carpathians.' Then it was coming closer and closer. Then they were saying, 'They're already in Bratislava, they're already in Bratislava.' Only, when it got here after they were already advancing closer and closer, the Morava spilled out. But why? Because the Germans drained the reservoirs, the dams here, the Vranov Dam, and whatever smaller dams were around, they all drained. And the Morava and the Dyje collided and spilled out, so there was water here up to Tvrdonice, almost up to the houses."

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    Tvrdonice, 05.04.2019

    duration: 59:42
    media recorded in project The Stories of Our Neigbours
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Kids, we don’t have a house anymore

Anna Čechová in her youth
Anna Čechová in her youth
photo: Archive of the witness

Anna Čechová, née Stibůrková, was born on 5 November 1933 in Tvrdonice near Breclav. The family had a small farm and a shop. In the spring of 1945, fierce fighting broke out between the Wehrmacht and the Red Army in the area on the Moravian-Slovak border. The villagers had to hide in the cellar for several days. A large part of the village burned down, the Stibůrkas lost their house and shop and had to rebuild it after the war. Anna worked all her life in the shop, first in the family shop and then in the nationalised one, which was transferred to the local Jednota. Later she worked in the Pramen shop in Břeclav.