Even if they had been shooting us, we would have persisted at all costs - we longed for the revenge that much
Milan Gabčan was born in 1932 in the village of Vydrná in Slovakia. After the war he moved with his parents and brother to the village of Litrbachy (Čistá) near Litomyšl, where they were allotted a farm. After the communist coup in 1948 and the subsequent collectivization, his father decided to emigrate to the West. At first he intended to check the conditions at the border, but he was caught by the border patrol and imprisoned. He spent several months in the prison at Uherské Hradiště. The farm, meanwhile, was confiscated by the state and the family was forcibly evicted. Milan Gabčan and his brother Stanislav sought revenge against the state and they decided on carrying out active resistance. A group of young men formed in Svitavy, and they hoped to move their passive neighbours into action by disseminating pamphlets. They printed around 1200 pamphlets discussing Masaryk’s humanism, which they spread all over the town.At the same time they were also readying themselves for active armed resistance. The secret police eventually arrested all of them save Milan Gabčan, who managed to escape to Slovakia. He hid there in a dugout near the village of Mostiště. The secret police eventually found him after somebody had betrayed him. The Regional Court in Brno sentenced him to 3 years of imprisonment. He spent nearly two years in the uranium ore mines in the Jáchymov region. He adamantly refused to obey and therefore had many conflicts with the wardens. He was sent to a correction cell several times, and his head was shaved all the time. Even after his release in April 1955, he was still under secret police surveillance, and he was summoned for interrogation several times. He presently lives in Choceň.