Anna Foglová

* 1938  

  • “The father of the family came to my parents to ask if they could hide somewhere. Dad told them to come in a week, and he discussed the matter with Granddad and prepared a stack of straw. They made a hole there, which they covered up. The stack was right behind the barn, where we used to go for straw, so there wasn’t any danger of betraying their whereabouts with a trodden path. They had a pail for faeces, and Grandma would always empty it in the evening. They brought them food every evening as well. Once a week they prepared things to let them have a bath inside the house. They didn’t tell [us] about it until now, and their youngest son also recalled how things were. How they’d been in the ghetto and had managed to escape. One of their sons was shot there. Nine-year-old Josef got lost somewhere and wandered around the forest alone. It must have been terrible. I get goose bumps just thinking about it. But then he met up with his parents. Winter was coming, they didn’t what to do, so they set off to our place in Frankov. They agreed with my parents that we’d hide in the stack, and that was from autumn till spring, eight months.”

  • “The Jews were from Mlýnov, and my parents had been in touch with them before the war broke out. My father had sold them farm goods, so they were in contact. From what I remember, I visited them one time with my grandma, and the lady gave us tea. But I don’t remember how things were during the war. My parents didn’t speak about it at all. We didn’t found out about it until after we had moved here.”

  • “I remember attending elementary school in Komenský Street. There was a dairy opposite the theatre, and the sign outside said: ‘NO BUTTER, NO MILK BECAUSE HOLÁTKO FAILED HIS QUOTA.’ It was tough. He resisted for long, but the earnings were terrible, and so he had to join in the end. I don’t know how many years it was, but he quit again afterwards. Even though he suffered from epilepsy, he didn’t mind hard work, but he couldn’t stand mental strain. And when he saw the way people worked in the co-op, the stealing that went on there, he kept getting into fits and was taken to hospital. So he quit the co-op. Of course, they gave him the worst field, he had no feed, so he had to go into debt to buy some for the livestock. I was in my third year at the school in Přerov. They took my scholarship, of course. They only gave eighty crowns, but then just before graduation they discovered that Dad had a house, so I wasn’t eligible for even those eighty crowns. So I had to sign that I’d give back seven-hundred-and-twenty crowns by the end of the year, otherwise they wouldn’t give me my graduation certificate.”

  • Full recordings
  • 1

    Šumperk, 24.10.2017

    duration: 01:31:00
    media recorded in project Stories of 20th Century
Full recordings are available only for logged users.

If anyone had found out about it at the time, our whole family would have been shot

Annotation photo Anny Holatková (Foglové)
Annotation photo Anny Holatková (Foglové)
photo: archiv pamětnice

Anna Foglová, née Holátková, was born on 13 July 1938 to Josef and Anna Holátko in the settlement of Frankov (Velké Dorohostaje) in Volhynia, which was under Polish rule (now part of Ukraine). During World War II her parents hid and fed a Jewish couple, the Tejtelmans, and their three children aged nine to twelve in a straw stack for eight months. They also saved the lives of Jiří and Marie Valeš, Jews whom they provided shelter for. They showed great courage. The region was under Nazi control, but moreover, there were bands of roving Banderites, who swept the country for Jews and those who hid them and murdered them all. Josef and his pregnant wife Anna did not risk only their own lives but also the lives of their two (three) children. Anna’s father was also a member of the Volhynian Czech resistance group Blaník. When the region was liberated by the Soviet Union, thirty-eight-year-old Josef Holátko volunteered into the Czechoslovak Army Corps, which he served with all the way to Czechoslovakia. As a reward, he was awarded a farm in Šumperk by decree. In 1947 the rest of the family remigrated to join him. Her parents kept silent about their actions in Volhynia for many years, until one day a man knocked at their door - it was Josef Tomer, the son of the Tejtelmans. At his initiative, Josef and Anna Holátko were given the Righteous Among the Nations honorific in 1991, and their names will be forever engraved on the Wall of Honor in the Garden of the Righteous in Jerusalem. As of 2017, their daughter Anna Foglová still lives in Šumperk.