“I would like to be buried here I’m not Deutsch, I’m Böhmisch.”
Erna Gudenrath was born in 1928 in the village of Phillipsdorf (now Filipov) in the Sudetes (near České Kamenice). Her father was a farmer and a member of the SDP (Sudeten Germans Party) and also later of the NSDAP (National Socialist German Workers’ Party). Her family supported Hitler, so, she signed up to be part of the German Girls’ Union. Her three elder brothers fought in the Wehrmacht, one of them was killed on the Eastern Front just before leaving for his wedding. After the war, the family had to abandon their home and village, the next year was spent waiting to be transferred to Germany. They were placed in the Soviet zone of Germany, in Pomerania. Following a difficult beginning, Erna succeeded in settling down in Hamburg. She visited Czechoslovakia for the first time in 1972, nowadays she visits regularly and spends a large part of the year there.