Marie Antošová

* 1932

  • “They came to my mom and told her that I was malnourished. I was nine years old at that time and they told her that I would go to a sanatorium and get food and treatment there. She was told that we would spend six weeks there. And then we would go home. They gave us clothing for the journey, nice blue woollen dress. With long sleeves, white collar, and embroidery. We received shoes, stockings, and a bag with school supplies. There were children who came from villages all the way from Nýrsko to Alžbětín and they were from families with many children. They selected those children who had German appearance. I had plaits and blonde hair... and so they gathered us and they sent us by train to Germany. On the train we were informed that the sanatorium was not able to accepts so many children and that we would therefore stay with families instead. They had already pre-selected which family would want to choose a particular child and the children were to be divided among childless families. Why? Because, like in my case... my dad was a Czech and my mom was a single mother and she had two children. And they took me away because I was a suitable type for a German family. Because I had this look… a German look.”

  • “The teacher left, the school bell was ringing, and he said: ‘That German swine is taking up space here, and when one needs help, she does not help him.’ He was so stupid... and as chance would have it, I have already had enough. When he said ‘German swine,’ I thought… at first we were called Böhmish, and now we are German swine? It made me so angry that I grabbed a wooden pen-case and I ran after him. He ran into the boys’ bathroom... and I gave him a beating there... I pushed his head into an urinal and I was beating him. And suddenly somebody pulled me up by my collar and led me out... it was the school principal. But I did not even get a worse grade for bad conduct on my school report for that, because the teacher called me a German swine. I just could not put up with it. During the war they were calling us Böhmish, and now we were German swine. I felt sorry about it… I was crying... and so I gave him a threshing. But since that time they began respecting me, and they knew that it was better not to provoke me.”

  • “At first I was untrustworthy… oh, how the world changes… and so I have served my term. My life was like this. I was fifteen and a half, and I got sentenced to four moths because I did not reveal his name. Who would have informed upon a neighbour who had been helping my parents? I did not want to escape, I was not even able to... my parents were penniless, and I had to go to work to earn money, and I was not even interested in running away. I did not want to… well, I have thus served my term. I was in prison in Klatovy. For the first three weeks I was in solitary confinement and nobody was allowed to come to me, and then I was in a group and I had to work. I was crying that I was hungry, and a female warden took pity upon me and they treated me well, and they were all nice to me there. Except the investigators, they were mean. Then they sent me to work in the kitchen and there were two SS female prisoners…two German women, and I was working with them. When they arrested Bruckdorfer and interned him in the Klatovy prison, they quickly transported me to Pilsen. Firstly because as a juvenile I was to be tried there, and secondly, they did not want me to learn that he was in prison. And then there was another interrogation and other court trials in Prague. I have caused harm to the Czechoslovak Republic…I have survived all this and I am here.”

  • “There were wires everywhere… when you ran up there, you were already in the wires... a red signal flare flew up and the soldiers already knew that somebody was there. One day they were chasing a roe… there was a roe instead of a man. But many times there was a young soldier who got killed... got shot in the head. That happened when somebody wanted to escape no matter the costs and he was armed and so they defended themselves and they were shooting at him... I saw it myself… when a car arrived to the Border Guards office and they were carrying him out, he was covered with a blanket and he was dead... he was a soldier. I was standing with my baby pram on the opposite side of the street at the butcher’s shop and I saw them carrying him, covered with the blanket. This was happening quite often... they lost their lives. Because they defended themselves, they wanted to escape and when they could not, they would simply shoot… our people, they were bandits…they defended themselves… well, it was a very, very horrible time. Germans had to leave from here and those who wanted to go out were not allowed to. And so they tried to leave illegally.”

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    Železná Ruda, 07.08.2018

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They all hated Hitler after the war, but it was already too late

As a young woman
As a young woman
zdroj: archiv pamětnice

Marie Antošová, née Heiny was born December 29, 1932 in Železná Ruda (Eisenstein in German). Her mother was a German, her father was a Czech and her parents were not married. In September 1938 the German authorities ordered them to temporarily leave their home and together with other German inhabitants of the border areas they were taken to Germany. Hitler anticipated that fighting would take place in the Czech borderlands. In 1941 she and other children from the Sudetenland were taken away by the German Red Cross to the German Reich to be re-educated. Marie refused to stay there and she returned to her family. Her mother was forced to undergo sterilization so that she would not be able to get pregnant with a Czech again. Marie experienced the liberation of Železná Ruda by the American army as well as local fighting in its environs. After the end of the war she faced hatred and disdain from the returning Czechs as well as from American soldiers. In summer 1948 when she was fifteen years old she was arrested during a dramatic gunfight for helping others with illegal border crossing and she was investigated by the StB who suspected her from cooperating with the American intelligence service CIC. As a juvenile she was sentenced to four months of imprisonment. A year later she married musician Vladimír Antoš and they had three sons. Železná Ruda became part of a restricted border zone in the 1950s. The family remained in Železná Ruda even in those times, with all the consequences ensuing from living behind the Iron Curtain. Marie Antošová is a widow, she lives in Železná Ruda and she is actively engaged in the public life.