Marta Heczko

* 1931

  • "Wilczek was a director here (of Polish school in Pruchna), there is a kindergarten now (former apartment of Mr Wilczek). He said: I’d like to teach you everything in one year. I remember him saying that. And he taught everything he was able to. Under German occupation […] we were learning there too, but Polish language is something different. Language is language, but writing (she learnt to speak Polish) […] I like it a lot and I still like it […] I can write correctly. But it has changed. There are more and more new words."

  • "And we spoke at Polish school, we had to speak (Polish) […] But we also spoke (Silesian), and I learnt to speak Polish in one year. Wilczek was a director (of school), he was a local. He lived here, there was his house, there is a kindergarten now."

  • "There were air strikes all the time. We were hiding in a basement for six weeks. We were sitting on potatoes, we were given straw […] There were soldiers everywhere! They were quicker in a basement than we did. When there were any 'Englishmen' as they were called in German [...] they were quicker. I remember that the youngest (sister) […] I don’t know if it was my brother, she fell down the stairs in a baby carriage. And she fell out of her carriage […] And then everyone […] it was quick, they all wanted to get to that basement. There were one-meter walls."

  • Full recordings
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    Pruchna, Polska, 17.10.2016

    duration: 57:41
    media recorded in project Silesia: Memory of multiethnic Region
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My life was good. I can’t complain

Marta Heczko
Marta Heczko
photo: Ośrodek Pamięć i Przyszłość

Marta Heczko nee Krypczyk was born on November 24, 1931 in Pruchna (Cieszyn Silesia). Her parents, Catholics from Pruchna, had a large 27-hectare farm. Marta and her brothers and sisters had to do farm works. Before an outbreak of World War II, she completed the first grade of Polish primary school and then attended German school in the years 1939-1945. Marta’s father was soon after encroachment of German army enlisted into Wehrmacht and sent to eastern front. He has never returned, the family only got a laconic information about his death and searching performed by Polish Red Cross was not successful. Due to approaching front, Krypczyk family evacuated to Hażlach, where they stayed for 6 weeks. Her house in Pruchna was completely destroyed and burnt down. Mother, grandmother and six children were taken in by neighbours. After the war, Marta completed seventh grade of Polish school, however, she did not continue her education due to numerous family obligations. On April 7, 1951, Marta married Erwin Heczko. After their wedding, they moved to Skoczów, where Erwin worked as a driver: initially in Powszechna Spółdzielnia Spożywców and then in an iron foundry. Five of six of their children were born in Skoczów: Gustaw, Marian, Henryk, Edward and Krystyna. 11 years later, Erwin and Marta decided to return to Pruchna and build a house at Marta’s patrimony. Their youngest child Bogusława was born in Pruchna. Her husband still worked as a driver, for last dozen or so year in Przedsiębiorstwo Komunikacji Samochodowej. He died in 2006. Marta has 8 grandchildren and 8 great-grandchildren, she still lives in Pruchna.