Dagmar Hamšíková

* 1931  

  • “There was talk of if he was alone in the cell or with someone else. Young as I was, I voiced the opinion that it’s better to be with someone – you can play together and do all kinds of things together. And he explained that people are all kinds and sorts, and it’s only pleasant to spend the whole day long with some of them. Not with everyone.”

  • “And, Prime Minister [Pierre] Trudeau arranged that Air Canada sent one aeroplane every day to pick up Czech emigrants. And, that one aeroplane had either 136 seats or 186 seats. So, each day a list was made of those 136 people plus ten young boys, in case someone didn’t turn up. There was never an empty seat.”

  • “I entered a second-hand bookshop and perused the books for a lengthy time, and when I came out I was stopped by a cop. If I had any objections, he quashed them and invited me to the Tile House [State Security HQ - trans.] in Letná. There, we chatted through the whole of one afternoon. In the end, he wanted me to sign that I agreed to provide them with information. I had almost written it down, because he was dictating. So, I said: ‘But I didn’t agree to that.’ – ‘Then cross it out.’ So, I crossed it out, so I’m not on the list of stetsecs [State Security officers and agents - trans.].”

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    Praha, 18.04.2018

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An ant shouldn’t despair, it will build a new roof

hamsikova_2.jpg (historic)
Dagmar Hamšíková
zdroj: archiv pamětnice / Jakub Zvoníček

Dagmar Hamšíková was born on 28 January 1931. She grew up in Cheb. Her father Josef Hamšík was a well-known Czechoslovak pilot and resistance fighter who helped pilots escape into exile in World War II. He was imprisoned by the Nazis in 1940. Dagmar would visit him in German prisons with her mother, bringing food for him and other prisoners. Josef Hamšík was executed in Berlin in 1943. After the War, her family was grossly slandered, and Dagmar was forced to switch schools after being reported on. In the 1950s, she was not very active in building Socialism, and so they barred her from graduating from secondary school. She completed a laboratory training course and became a lab assistant. From 1956, she worked as a booking clerk at Czechoslovak Airlines. In September 1968, she and her husband emigrated to Vienna and then to Canada in December that year. In 2014 they both returned to the Czech Republic.