Jiřina Masná

* 1936  

  • “We lived together normally. Even if our family. My mom’s sister lived there where the Zborovská street is ending, at Nádražní. They came and they said that they would establish their station there, that they would see to both sides, to Přívoz and to Ostrava. She was ill and she told them: ‘Who invited you, I don’t want you in my flat.’ A day after, they arrested her. She disappeared from her flat. Within three months, we got an announcement that she had died of pneumonia. Cousin disappeared about that time as well. She left for Vienna. Even Drahoš disappeared, he ran away somewhere. But then, the other aunt was married to a German. They came from Vienna, they had a shop in Ostrava. In our family, everything was mixed up. My mother went to German school, there was not a Czech one. My dad went to a Polish school, at that time, there was only a Polish language school in Hrušov, they changed it only later.“

  • “It was evening. I know that the blokes from the colony ran to the mine to borrow all torches and lamps. Everyone brought them home expecting there be no light. We were settled in the cellar. We were there. Mom said that it will happen because they got an order to leave. She said she had heard it in the afternoon. Suddenly, they just took all their stuff from the kitchen. They had those devices and equipment and idunnowhat, I did not go there too often, we were rather staying in the cellar. But they left. At once, it was empty. We had a curly black dog in the yard. They disappeared and the dog went with them. In the evening, they were gone. Everyone wondered what would happen. So we were in the cellar. The cellar door, we could see the chemical plant from there. When the dor opened and someone wanted to look outside because it was said that Ostrava is already liberated, so someone shot at our door from the chemical plant. They knew that neighbour’s brother was at her place, he was with the SS. He had been staying with her for several weeks.”

  • “We lived in a flat, we saw the mine shaft and Heřmanice from there. The Germans came and they said ‘This flat is ours’. Even though the flat belonged to the mine. They said that they would have their radio station there. It was an one bedroom flat. Mom cooked there, dad worked underground in the mine. Mom spoke good German, she went to German language school. They took everything. Dad moved us to the cellar. So we stayed in the cellar. Mom then said they were retreating because she heard everything and she knew. So she knew what they were talking about when she was cooking in that kitchen. They did not ask. They just took over the place and that was it. Nobody protested. After all, our neighbour across the street, her brother was in the SS and later, he was hiding in her place. You never know during such times. I was a child but I did notice how the situation kept changing and we never knew whether it would come to an end or not. They needed place so they made it for them. But, yes, I was scared.”

  • Full recordings
  • 1

    Ostrava, 04.08.2020

    duration: 01:29:48
    media recorded in project Stories of 20th Century
  • 2

    Ostrava, 05.08.2020

    duration: 59:08
    media recorded in project Stories of 20th Century
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Od dětství jsem se pořád něčeho bála

Holy Communion. 1946
Holy Communion. 1946
photo: archiv pamětnice

Jiřina Masná, née Flurová, was born on the 10th April in 1936 in Ostrava. She comes from a family of miners, her grandfather, father and other relatives worked in the mines. She grew up in a miners’ colony in the Hrušov neighbourhood in Ostrava. During WWII, the German occupying forces built a radio station in their house. She and her family had to live in the cellar during that time. Some of her relatives were imprisoned in concentration camps during WWII. She witnessed several air raids in Ostrava and the liberation of the city in 1945. She worked as a design engineer in the Stavoprojekt company and she thus participated, among others, on the construction of the Ostrava neighbourhood of Poruba. In 1966, she started working in the Vítězný únor [February Victory] mine as a map draughtswoman. She never joined the Communist party and for this reason, she got into clashes with her superiors and Communist functionaries.