Marie Jiroušková

* 1920  

  • “My husband was arrested on the 17th of November 1939 directly from the dorms and he was in Sachsenhausen with Antonín Zápotocký. They were very closely involved, because sometimes they shared something from a package that the one or the other got. Tonda Zápotocký invited us, Mrs. Zápotocká invited also her fellow prisoners to have a lunch at the Castle. It was such a thing for us ..., we didn't know what to do at all, we had to get dressed. It was such an interesting, large gathering of friends who had been arrested with Antonin or Mrs. Zápotocka at that time. ” "Do you remember the meeting?" “It was so weird that we didn't know each other at all. We knew Mr. Zapotocky, but the others were their friends. And they did the seating order in a way, that I could not communicate with my husband we could not talk to each other, share experiences, and likewise. It was kind of weird, we didn't feel well.”

  • “We did not drive much [with the Americans], they were coming to Strunkovice to our cottage, where my mother lived, and my brother was coming. And because they could talk in English, they were meeting at our place every evening at a time when they still had to go armed because the time limit was not yet completed. The hall was full of weapons, which they set aside there. Mum prepared poppy seed pastry for them every day, they loved it.”

  • Full recordings
  • 1

    Mělník, 10.05.2019

    duration: 24:54
    media recorded in project Stories of 20th Century
  • 2

    Mělník, 14.05.2019

    duration: 01:48:14
    media recorded in project Stories of 20th Century
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Zápotocký? He was that kind of a good uncle

Marie Jiroušková during the filming
Marie Jiroušková during the filming
photo: Filming in Post Bellum

Marie Jiroušková was born in the family of a financial controller Jaroslav Pernegr on November 7, 1920 in České Budějovice. She had three siblings, younger brother Jaroslav Pernegr became a top physicist, studied cosmic rays and later worked in CERN, in Switzerland. Due to their father’s job, the family often moved, they lived in Vyšší Brod, Čáslav and at the end in Strunkovice in the Prachatice area. Marie graduated from the teaching institute in Čáslav, during the war she worked as a nurse in Husinec near Vimperk. In May 1945 she met US Army soldiers and her sister Ludmila Drahomíra married one of them. During the liberation, Marie also met her husband, Antonín Jiroušek, who came to the Husinec surgery after his release from the Sachsenhausen concentration camp. Here her husband was imprisoned together with Antonín Zápotocký, with whom he made a personal friendship. During the Zapotocky presidency, the Jiroušeks were invited to have a lunch at the Prague Castle, but the family did not engage in any political involvement. After 1948, they moved to Nelahozeves, where her husband found a job in the Povltava fat factory. Marie worked here as a nurse, later as a primary school teacher. She thought she could not have children, but unexpectedly she became pregnant at the age 36, her second son was born at age 45.