„As for us and our upbringing, we were not important. His comrades-in-arms were important to him. He really had this mentality. When he was released from jail in 1953, the first thing he did was to take a typewriter and start writing apartment applications. My mother asked him who he was doing this for, and he was writing applications for the wardens from jail. And my mother said, 'Are you crazy, why are you doing this?' And he replied: 'These are our boys, they are merely primary school graduates, never in their lives would they be able to write an application like this.'“
„I will never forget, it must have been in 1953 or 1952, when my father was imprisoned and we lived in Most, so on Saint Nicholas Day we easily had 15 Nicholases coming to us. People were afraid of us, of course, they crossed the street when our mother passed by with us. But when they wore masks and they were dressed as Nicholases, they came to us. We really had so many Nicholases who brought us various goodies, and I didn't see it as something weird, it was normal for me and it was normal for our father.“
„The authorities arrived looking for my father, so my mother went to the Slánskýs the next day, talked to Slánský's wife, and when she returned, she told my grandfather that it was terribly strange, because as they sat together at a table like this, soldiers stood behind them and aimed at them with submachine guns. So she came home with the notion that it was all weird, and then she was no longer surprised about anything. A house search took place at our house, which was very thorough. They also pulled little Ládek out of the crib and dismantled it fully to see if there were any weapons. My mother just said that she would at least know where my father was, since he had a tendency to just leave someplace for three days straight without my mother ever seeing him.“
„They got to the area of Brdy, which was a German training camp, and they got to Mníšek pod Brdy. There was solitude, Lucký mill, and that’s where the miller Vašíček lived. When they asked him for food, he told them to take what they wanted. My father objected that there were no thugs, that they asked him for help as members of the Czechoslovak army. So he went, and since they had freshly slaughtered animals, he brought everything he had to offer. My father said that their colonel Melnikov was wounded, so he asked whether they had any fruit. So they brought the fruit. And Mr. Vašíček asked how he could know they were not fraudsters. My father told him that it was simple, that they would leave in the morning through here and that Mr. Vašíček should then go to the gendarmerie station and report that they had gone that way. So they said goodbye, my father saying that when the war was over, he would come the next day. And indeed, when the war ended, a car arrived and our father stepped out of it. To this day, we consider the Vašíčeks our family and they always have been. When my father was locked up and only our mother worked for us, she fed us and even fed our grandmother and grandfather. They did not have a pension because they had to leave their farm, so the Vašíčeks always came, brought butter, lard, meat, fruit and we spent the holidays there, their youngest daughter was as old as me, and when she finished high school, she came to visit us in Teplice, stayed in my room, even got married there, married one of our young friends. And for years we kept the tradition of having Christmas carp from the Vašíčeks from their nursery in their yard alive. And it stretches to this day. My children go to Mníšek the same way we went there.“
I was never afraid of communists or the secret police
Miroslava Holubová, born Kišová, was born on March 20, 1948 in Chomutov. Her father Vasil Kiš, a World War II veteran and commander of the parachute airborne group Jan Kozina, had her baptised on the Czechoslovak flag by a Czech Brethren parson. Her childhood was not easy, her father was arrested in 1950 and released with amnesty only after three years, her grandparents were evicted from a farm in Pesvice as part of the collectivization, and her younger brother Vladimír got cancer that prevented him from reaching adulthood. Miroslava graduated from a secondary school focused on foreign trade, first in Jablonec nad Nisou and later in Prague, then further studied Czech and English at the Faculty of Arts, Charles University. After school, she started working as a teacher at secondary schools in Teplice and Prague and later taught English at the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering of the Czech Technical University in Prague. November 1989 brought her new opportunities, she co-founded the feminist organization New Humanity and participated in the construction and operation of the Letohrádek Vendula sanitary facility. Miroslava Holubová worked for the non-governmental non-profit organisation Gender Studies for many years, she still worked there in 2021 and was active in the Ecumenical Council of Churches of the Czech Republic, where she represented the women’s organisation of the Czech Brethren Evangelical Church. In 2021 she lived in Nová Ves near Louny, near the place where her father Vasil Kiš parachuted into the protectorate in mid-October 1944. This witness’ story could be recorded thanks to the support of the Ústí Region.