Ludmila Čechová

* 1945  

  • "They came from Prague, they searched all day. A husband's fellow prisoner from Canada was visiting us. And he said that if he didn't know, he wouldn't believe it. They really unscrewed the drawers, everything and couldn't find it. Looked in the attic and found it there. Look, I was at work, my husband was gone and we didn't even lock the door very often. That's a fact, too. There they moved a box in which we had things and it was stuffed in the floor. And this tube was inserted ... and there was a microphone at the end of the tube. And as we had a vaulted ceiling in the kitchen, that vault was ... the tube was dropped between the bricks ... that would be there to this day. And it had a range of fifteen kilometers, the broadcast. When they found it, they said that. "

  • "The doctor went to the senior doctor, who saw that I was dressed in white and said, 'Are you an employee?' I say yes that I work downstairs in the irradiation rooms, and he said to me: 'Mr. Čech is fairly old, the artificial kidney, I don't know about that.' I say, "Doctor, this is a man who has been imprisoned for fifteen and a half years. He was taken aback and said what? I'm saying, yes, he has fifteen and a half years of prison behind him. So he turned to the other doctor." and he said, 'Mr. Čech will be by half past five - and it was half past one - he will be immediately ready for an artificial kidney.' And this man, this senior doctor, a Jew who survived the concentration camp because he was very smart and helped the people of the Gestapo to cure someone, he gave us another six years of life. "

  • "Father Pípal married us. Apart from our parents, there were basically just prisoners. There was also the general’s wife Kutlvašrová. General Kutlvašr was already dead. The comrades were waiting in the pub and we went around to the local municipality in Štoky, so we didn't have to go to Havlíčkův Brod. So the priest married us and we went alone. Vít Tajovský went with us, as a witness to the husband. And I didn't have a witness because my witness was late, it was supposed to be my brother-in-law. Their motorcycle broke down, so they were late. So I was looking for a witness and my husband's uncle was there, so he went as a witness. And again we went through the park to the church. They were sitting in the pub and then someone told them look, they are already in the church. So they had to wait until after the ceremonies. But they took pictures of who was there. "

  • "A kind of nervous breakdown. The slightest strain already made them shut down, walk just before they straightened up again ... it's hard to talk about it. Maybe my husband talked, walked, walked, talked. Or it hit them, too, when they let them go, that in fact life was shaped completely differently than they imagined they had suffered unnecessarily, then when they heard everyone calling for their executions, they went mad because they loved the nation. And that the nation changed, that they lost everything, it mattered to them. "

  • “I have to say that he came to the church and he saw the only girl there, and thus we got to know each other. We knew each other for a year and he had no place to stay and I felt so sorry for him. All people were looking at him with disdain. He had to report to the local municipality office every day. He had a very strict postponed sentence. He worked on a construction site, and one year later we married. We met on June 5, 1964 and a year later, on June 5, 1965 we celebrated our wedding.”

  • “Some time during those years when we were meeting like this they installed a tapping device in our house. We don’t know when they did it. The fact is that when you see that apartment house over there, and the roof of that house, after the Velvet Revolution people were telling us: ‘There were three cars standing here every day, and they were watching you, days and nights.’ People told this to us afterwards. Since it was not far away, they could see it. The fact is, however, that when they were taking my husband and Father Jakubec for interrogation, they thought it strange that they knew quite a lot, but Father Jakubec believed that the device had been installed in his parish house. But it was in our apartment, unfortunately.”

  • “He was a wonderful man, there is no need to say more. He was a man who has remained a child. During all those years, and we have spent a lot of time together, he has never said a bad word about anybody and he has never judged anyone. And every time my husband, who was a soldier, was complaining, he would tell him: ‘Oh, come on, Jožánek, Jožánek, let it be.’ I have never seen that he would not like somebody. Now the things that he did like: He liked good food, that’s true. Even when I made strawberry dumplings from a potato mass for the first time and it was all floating in the watery sauce, as I was serving them on plates, I told them: ‘God has given us this, eat it then.’ And he ate it all. He said: ‘You know, there was time when we did not even have bread, and we were dying of hunger and we would give anything for bread crumb.”

  • Full recordings
  • 1

    Štoky, 08.03.2017

    (audio)
    duration: 43:42
    media recorded in project The Stories of Our Neigbours
  • 2

    Jihlava, 21.07.2021

    (audio)
    duration: 01:58:42
    media recorded in project Příběhy regionu - HRK REG ED
Full recordings are available only for logged users.

Tolerate people, do not judge them, you never know all the reasons

13-year-old Ludmila
13-year-old Ludmila
photo: archiv pamětnice

Ludmila Čechová, née Kmošková, was born in 1945 in Štoky near Havlíčkův Brod. She grew up in a Catholic family and she was not admitted to the school of nursing due to her faith. She later completed this school in the form of attending evening classes. In 1965 she married Josef Čech who had spent fifteen years in a communist prison. They were persecuted by the Secret Police StB for their entire lives and an eavesdropping device was installed in their house. Her husband passed away in 1994 and Ludmila, a nurse by profession, was looking after him before he died. After her husband’s death she was looking after their friend, abbot of the Želiv monastery Vít Tajovský, and she was also taking care of another former political prisoner Luboš Hruška.