Anna Tichavská, roz. Švarcová
* 1922 †︎ 2013
Interviewer: “At that time, you were about to marry your husband, so preparations for the wedding were underway. What was it like?” A. T.: “My dad’s sister lived in Tršice. The sister-in-law gave us eggs. Everything was ready. My grandma’s brother was a butcher, and he had an icehouse there. Butter had already been prepared in the icehouse. Baskets with eggs were there, butter; a big wedding was planned. Eventually it just turned into a funeral. We had also been feeding the pig for slaughter. It was all for the wedding. But there was no wedding, because our house burnt down and the Vlasov soldiers took everything from the icehouse. They stole all our food. Nothing was left there. In the morning we didn’t have anything to eat.”
“In Zákřov we all lived just like one family. Dad had the Skopal sisters there. They were cousins. Franta Oher and Tonda Švarc were also cousins. They were all family. We didn’t have enough space, and so we kept straw in the pub and we brought it from there. There was uncle Polda. He was no Mr. Polda, but simply uncle Polda, and then aunt Polda, his wife. All one family. There was the butcher. He was my mom’s brother. My mom’s sister passed through the village and bought butter and eggs, and then went to Přerov to sell them. We used to have beautiful balls. A woodcutters’ ball. What a beauty. My godmother was a great cook. So many delicious treats that she baked. And we used to play theatre. I played with Slávek Kozílka many times. And once with Franta Pospíšil, too.”
“When I was returning from the Skopals' house, I carried their photo camera in a leather pouch. The Germans jumped at me when I entered he hallway, shouting: ´Weapon! Weapon!´ I explained that I had no weapon, that it was a camera, and told them to take it out. I gave it to them, I let them have it. Then I went home and in front of Ohera’s house a Vlasov soldier grabbed me and he was dragging me so hard that he tore off my coat’s sleeve and he threatened to shoot me. I told him: ´Shoot me. If you want to shoot me, shoot me then.´ He pushed me and left. I went home. The pantry was still there, it was not on fire yet. The area next to it was on fire. I had three pairs of shoes ready in that pantry; they were to be my dowry for the wedding. I headed for the pantry, but at that moment, the house collapsed and I could no longer enter. A Vlasov soldier came and I was standing by the door. I was looking at the house and crying. He told me: ´Don’t cry. Go to the neighbors’ house, tell them to give you something to eat. Your house was not supposed to burn down. The other family’s house was to be set on fire.´ That’s what he told me. Ohera’s house should have been set on fire.”
“They ordered my cousin Lón from Tršice to take them to Olomouc to the oberlandrat. He was driving them there, but when they approached Týnec, where there is a forest, he got out and removed the back panel of the wagon for them. He stopped for a moment and let them do what they liked. They obviously got out and ran away. He put the panel back. It was a high wagon. He arrived to the oberlandrat informing them he had brought the Jews for them. They went out, opened the wagon and nobody was there. They didn't do anything to him for it. He said: ´It’s not my fault. I don’t know what they were doing in the back. I kept going all the way, but I was not able to rush the horses to run faster.´ The Germans didn't do anything to him for it.”
Interviewer: “You were just writing letters and invitations for the wedding” A. T.: “Yes. We were. Mom was sitting by the table, dad was on the other side of the table, and they were writing invitations for my wedding. Inviting all to come for the wedding. Our window opened to the yard and out to the street. All of a sudden, shooting broke out. You’ve never seen anything like it, it was flying through the kitchen, these light projectiles. They were flying through the kitchen and mom began screaming. Dad told her: ´Be quiet, don’t cry, silence. We got to leave, we need to leave the house immediately.´ We were shouting, and our cousin with his child and two boys came to us through the backyard gate. It was closed and he knocked and we let him in and all of us left the house together. We went with the children to Skopal’s house. The soldier who was guarding the door didn’t want to let us at first, but he eventually relented. We wanted to go to the village because my mother’s brother lived there. So we went to the Skopal family, but many Germans were already there. We came there, and … My cousin had dark black hair. He wore a hat. They knocked the hat from his head. And when the hat fell to the ground and they saw his hair, they began beating him and they took the little girl from his arms. The girl was screaming: ´Daddy!´ Because her mother had died before.”
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A funeral in place of a wedding
Anna Tichavská, née Švarcová, was born in 1922 in Zákřov near Olomouc. On April 18, 1945 her native house was set on fire by soldiers of the 574th Cossack battalion, who arrested 23 men in the village for their support of the partisans. Two days later, 19 of them were shot and burnt to death in a forest log cabin near the Kyjanice hamlet. Her cousin František Švarc and his sixteen-year-old son Vladimír were among the victims. At the time of the assault on the village, Anna was to marry Vojtěch Tichavský. Not only her wedding dress was burnt together with their house, but the Cossacks also stole all the food which was prepared for the wedding feast. After the war Anna moved to Lazníky to be with her husband and she still lives there today. Anna Tichavská died on 2 March 2013.