“They put all of us children into a big car and drove us away. That place was Germany. I was just crying and I was not hungry. Nurses were handing out big slices of dark bread with marmalade for us, each of us was to get one slice. We were sitting on the floor, and it was so crowded that the ladies who were giving us the bread had to tread carefully so that they wouldn’t step on us. I remember that the boys who knew me and who were sitting around me were telling me: ´Evička, give it to me, give it to me… ,´ because I was only crying and I didn’t want the food nor anything else. They were so happy that they could take my bread.”
“When my mom grabbed me, I asked her: ´And where is daddy?,´ because they were always together. Mom already knew it. It was terrible when daddy was not there, I still kept thinking and hoping that he would come back, that he was perhaps still in the army.”
“When we were sitting there, boots were coming in all the time. If you are a child and you are sitting on the floor, you don’t look up, but you only see some large black German boots. The officers were walking in there. One day they came in and I was sitting there with Mařenka, and they picked Mařenka. Mařenka was shouting that she had her sister and brother there, too, but they selected her to take her away, and I was shouting: ´I want to go, too!´ and I held on to Mařenka and didn’t want to let go of her. One thing I remember was that the big boots grabbed my chin and looked at me. And only the thing that saved me was the fact that I had blue eyes. If I had not had blue eyes, they would have left me there. I was the last one who was selected, and it was only because I haven’t let go of Mařenka. I kept holding on to her and didn’t want to let her go, because they had taken my mommy away, and Mařenka has been taking care of me, and so I couldn’t allow them to take her away from me. You know, at times like this, such a great strength takes hold of you, that you don’t even realize what you are doing, that’s an instinct. This was the instinct and I clang to her and didn’t let go and this has saved me.”
“My aunt didn’t speak about my parents. It was taboo. When I asked, she would reply that mom and dad would come, and that I had to wait, but not to speak about it anywhere, because nobody was supposed to know about it, it was taboo. She spoke with me only in German, so that nobody would notice anything, otherwise they would do something bad to us again. Since she was afraid, she spoke only German; she could speak well and she used the Berlin dialect, and I thus learned the proper German. As a young girl she had studied there.”
God gave me life and I wanted to pay it back to Him this way
Eva Kubíková was born April 29, 1937 in Prague. Her father František Kubík grew up in a Czech family who lived in Germany, but in the 1920s he moved back to Czechoslovakia due to the bad economic situation. He worked as an editor in the Prague office of the Czech Press Agency, and he also cooperated with the Czech Radio. Eva’s mother was a native of Lidice. She was a seamstress, but after the birth of her daughter she no longer worked and became a housewife. The young family lived in Lidice in the house of Eva’s grandmother on her mother’s side. The terror following Heydrich’s assassination had a severe impact on Eva’s life. Early in the morning on June 10, 1942, she and her parents were ordered to leave their house. Without anybody realizing it, that was when she said her last good-bye to her father. Several days later she got separated from her mother and grandmother in grammar school in Kladno, when she was taken away together with the other children. The children from Lidice were transported to Poland to Łódź, where she became one of the few children who were selected for re-education. Her father’s sister, who was married to a German, managed to get Eva assigned into her family, without letting the authorities know that they were actually relatives. Her aunt was taking care of her till the end of the war. Her relatives then took her to Lidice for the first commemorative service, where she was reunited with her mother and grandmother and also learned about her father’s death. Her mother remarried in 1947, and with her second husband Jaroslav Zbíral had Eva’s younger sister Jaroslava, who was born in 1948. After the communist coup in 1948 the family decided to leave the country. Their escape in 1949 was successful; the parents with their little children crossed the border illegally during the border guards’ lunch break. German soldiers were already waiting on the other side, and they drove them to the headquarters of the International Refugee Organization in Munich. From there the family moved to Norway, where Eva’s mother’s friend from Ravensbrück lived, and this woman helped them to adapt to life in a foreign country. The family lived in Norway till 1954, when they decided to go to Canada to the relatives of her stepfather. Eva studied medicine in Canada, and she works as an eye specialist there.