„We had the first contact with resistance right after the occupation on 15th March 1939. Ostrava was occupied on 14th March at night and we were living on the borders with Poland at that time. So during that night we helped 300 poeple to cross the borders and escape from Nazis. Most of the refugees were Jews. The track went from Heřmanice, Michalkovice, further to Lechvald and then further to Poland. The trail was very tough but the Poles, althought I have some Polish relatives, were treating us badly. They were not polite to our nation at that time.“
„I remember the trial with Slánský at the end of 1952. I was on the first floor in Pankrác prison, I think it was number 62, when I saw Slánský coming in cuffs. I have never in my life seen such inhumanity. Even in the prison they could be a little bit human but they were escorting him cuffed with hands behind his back and with cuffed feets. He had such a chain around his head like draft animal with an armed guard holding it, other guards in front of him and also on the other side had submachine guns.“
„When I got to Pankrác, there was a guard called Svoboda. And he was tormenting us. The cells were overfull without enough radiotars so we were ver often cold. But when someone told the guard that he is cold, he put the man into a dark dungeon room where was only floor, two stairs and a straw mattress and he brought water hose and sprayed him with ice cold water. This is how he 'made things hot' for him.“
I live this life only once, so I should be a good person.
Jaroslav Musial was born on 13th May 1921 into family of Czechoslovak legionaries in Heřmanice near Ostrava. In 1939 along with his father he helped the Czechoslovak citizens to cross Polish borders. After being interrogated by Gestapo he decided to escape from the Protectorate and went to Hungary where he got caught. After a succesful return he studied catholic seminary. When Nazis closed his seminary he worked as a forced worker in Norway. He managed to escape from forced labour and worked on railway. During the Communist regime, he studied law and engineering, publicly protested against the execution of Milada Horáková and also against the unification of the Social democratic party with Communists. For this reason he was followed by the Secret police (StB), falsely accused of sabotage and jailed. After release he was politically engaged as a member of the Confederation of political prisoners and also in the Club of commited nonpartisans. Because of this activity he lost his job and could work only as a worker. After the Velvet revolution he became senator and active member of the Union of freedom fighters. He was awarded the Order of Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk, IV. Class. Jaroslav Musial died on June 19th, 2017.