Forced collectivisation in practice. My father hugged me and I didn’t see him for a year
Josef Jonáš was born on 12 March 1942 in Křtěnov near Olešnice into a family of middle-class farmers. His parents Josef and Aloisie owned about ten hectares of farmland. In 1953, as part of the forced collectivization in the Olešnice region, there were large-scale arrests. Among those arrested was the father of the witness, and the court sentenced him to two years in the Vykmanov labour camp near Jáchymov. After a year, he was released to found the Křtěnov Unified Agricultural Cooperative (JZD), but he failed to do so. In the meantime, Josef Jonáš, his mother and sister had to take over the work on the farm and manage the deliveries. In 1959 the family joined the newly established JZD. After primary school, he attended the secondary agricultural school for two years, then joined the JZD Křtěnov. Due to the poor financial situation, he left the cooperative for another job. In 1962 he joined the army in Louny. Shortly after the war he returned to JZD Křtěnov. In 1965 he married Zdena Bělehradská. They had three children together - two sons and a daughter. In the sixties, he unsuccessfully applied for his father’s rehabilitation. Rehabilitation took place only in the 1990s. After the revolution, he and his work partners founded a private agricultural enterprise. In 2022 he lived with his wife in Křtenov.