Jaroslav Hon

* 1939  

  • "When we left Mokrý Lazce, which is the first village under the Hrabyně Hill, the whole way, the whole hill was full of horse-drawn carriages, on which were the bodies of dead Russian soldiers. It was something incredible for me as a child."

  • "Hrabyně was completely destroyed. Our house burned down. The parents had nothing left but one goat, and it had a shot leg. That was the situation. A farmer took pity on us, his name was Kadula, and he took us with him. Five of us lived in one room. A large amount of Russian ammunition, grenades and armored fists were stored in the hall. It was something terrible. My parents begged us to keep away from it to avoid injury. We were there for about half a year. Then the Czech soldiers built a wooden house for us in the father's parents' garden. We lived there until the end of 1949, when we moved to a new house, which our parents had built."

  • "Russian soldiers have decided that Hrabyně must be conquered and destroyed. At night, under the supervision of two Russian soldiers, we and other families moved from the cellars across the fields to the liberated village of Mokré Lazce. We came to a large barn and we were there until the Hrabyně was liberated. The Russian soldiers then cooked goulash and fed us because we were hungry."

  • "My parents didn't have a cellar in the family house, so we were the first two days of fighting in the basement of the forest administration house, which was the last in our colony. When it was set on fire and destroyed, my parents decided that we had to leave the cellar. At night, during the shooting and at great risk, we moved to a farmer who managed parents´ fields. His name was Trojek. It was extremely dangerous, but there was nothing left. We then spent another night there."

  • "Even before the outbreak of war in Hrabyně, we used to go to the outskirts of the village, especially in the evening, to see how Opava, Troppau in German, was bombed. Those were the glows! It was fantastic for us children. When the war came to us in the village, it was really a terrible period."

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    v Ostravě, 10.10.2019

    (audio)
    duration: 02:38:02
    media recorded in project Příběhy regionu - STM REG ED
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We lost everything during the battles for Hrabyně. All we have left is a kid with a shot leg

Jaroslav Hon at graduation photo in 1957
Jaroslav Hon at graduation photo in 1957
photo: Archiv Jaroslava Hona

Jaroslav Hon was born on March 31, 1939 in Hrabyně in the Opava region. He remembers the liberation of Hrabyně by the Red Army in April 1945. He spent a week of heavy fighting with his parents in the cellars, their house was completely destroyed. After the war, a family of five lived for half a year altogether in a single room at a local farmer´s. Then they lived in a wooden house built for the inhabitants of the destroyed village by the army. He graduated from the metallurgical industrial school in Ostrava-Vítkovice. He worked at the Vítkovice Ironworks for more than forty years. In the 1960s he moved to Ostrava. The family knew the native of Hrabyně, a prominent economist and First Republic politician Karel Engliš.