Ing. František Macháček

* 1935  

  • “He was to arrive, after two years, after the first one (imprisonment) on a certain day. I don't know what day it was. We were expecting him, Mum didn't, she said she couldn't, that she couldn't endure nervously if he didn't come back. So she was home, but I rode my bike to meet him. My uncle and aunt lived right next to the station. So he didn't go home from that train right now, but went there and one cousin went for my mom to come. We sat there for about two or three hours, all afternoon, and he was telling us what it was like. He could, because he knew no one would tell on him. As I tell you, at first I didn't believe him how they were treated. Well, it was the first time, you know that we were ... Grandpa, when he was locked up, he was a strong guy of ninety kilos, when he returned, he was half his original weight. He was half a head smaller than me and when he gave anyone a slap, it was the one to remember. I think they were treated almost like in the concentration camp. I told you about the water and other stuff. He said: 'Well, when I got four dumplings for lunch, they were half a centimetre.' So grandpa, he gave the young guy a dumpling more. He always said: 'I felt sorry for him, the young boy. He was hungry.´ We could not even send him a package. There was no mention of that. Nobody dared ask. We could have written a letter to him once a month, and so could he.”

  • “We put flowers there every year, not just that year. It was an established tradition that we collected our poor money and bought a flower. They criticized us for coming there dressed up. Bollocks! We were well dressed, we didn't come in shorts, well in March it wouldn't work anyway. And on March 7, we carried a flower there every year. But then, we should have had a Haná ensemble. We had borrowed costumes from Kostelec and we were supposed to perform publicly on the square. Of course, when Gottwald died, we were obviously forbidden that. So we only danced in the auditorium. Yeah in the auditorium, it was fun too. So we collected money, took the flower, Olinka bought it. The next day we went there, put a flower there and, as always, we lit a candle, one or two. We bowed and walked away. We didn't demonstrate or anything. That was such a tradition. And they reproached us terribly and said that we are actually the originator of the Prostejov uprising, which broke out but only a month after we put the flower there. We put it there on March 7, and it broke out on April 10.”

  • “The war is over here in the morning of 9 May, when we got out of the broken house, and the Germans were gone. Before they were hiding in our cellar. But they were correct, it was the Volkssturm, or whatever it was called. The first soldiers who came to us were Romanians. The Russians followed. Not that they were robbing in the village, but they didn't even notice us because the house was broken, no roof, no windows, no doors, so they just passed by. My dad had half a litre of slivovitz hidden waiting to welcome the liberators. So he pulled it out and offered the first one, and he took the whole bottle and the grandfather said, 'What do I give the others now?' They were going to get treated in the village. 'Otherwise there was really enough ... We couldn't get out of the cellar for ten days. There were eighteen of us, adults and kids. Because we had reinforced concrete ceilings, it was a new house, like I said. And if they stayed at home in the kitchen, they were better off. We had wine, beds, all the equipment, because we expected it to pass after about ten days. So when they wanted to warm the kids milk or something and smoked, the Russians started to attack. Immediately. They thought the Germans had an observation point there. They were not responsible for it. A lot of them died there too. And about three hundred yards from us ended the last Russian tank that the Germans set on fire there.”

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    Olomouc, 28.09.2018

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    duration: 02:46:48
    media recorded in project Příběhy regionu - STM REG ED
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I wish everyone mainly good health, because everything else derives from that

František Macháček - contemporary photo from gymnasium
František Macháček - contemporary photo from gymnasium
photo: archiv pamětníka

František Macháček was born on 22 November 1935 in Prostějov and lived with his parents in Čehovice. The parents built a new house, but when the front passed through Čehovice at the end of the war, the house got badly damaged. His father, Antonín Macháček, employed as a regional zootechnician at a state farm, refused to join the Communist Party and in April 1950 he was sentenced to two years in prison in a trial. He was imprisoned in Bory, Mírov and uranium mines in Jáchymov. Since 1950 František studied at the Jiří Wolker grammar school in Prostějov. When the removal of the statue of T. G. Masaryk caused massive protests there in 1953, they expelled their entire class from the school as alleged initiators of the demonstration. One year later, František was able to graduate and began studying building construction at the Brno University of Technology. His father was imprisoned again for eight months while defending an abused horse and not retreating from his anti-communist stance. At the end of his studies, František was told that he was the son of a political prisoner, so he was not allowed to defend himself. Finally, after a year he could complete his university studies and became the main designer at the Agroprojekt design institute, where he worked until retirement. The father lived to see the freedom and rehabilitation for his imprisonment.