Jiří Pitín

* 1942  

  • “My mom ended her life on Christmas in 1944. I have it here, I can show you the documents related to her death. So far I have two versions about the end of her life. One says that she basically went mad, that she was constantly running up to the gate, calling her children... and allegedly claiming that she saw dad climbing on a chimney, because there was a chimney there. The bricks of the chimney probably reminded her of him... [of his job]. According to the second version, she ended her life in the electric fence, so I don’t know which of them is true. Anyway, she wasn’t able to endure it anymore because she was too sensitive.”

  • “She went through a purgatory with me... and she is in heaven. Whether it brought fulfillment to her life? It probably did, because even on her deathbed she was calling my name. Therefore, even though I had been a naughty child, it did bring her satisfaction in some way. After all, in me she had the child she never had. And naturally, I owe her that she was my nearest kin, and that it was certainly better for me than to be brought up by some strangers.”

  • “In the morning when dad learnt from the others what was happening and that Lidice was surrounded, he didn’t return to Lidice and he went hiding. At first he went to Hostouň. I learnt this only some two years ago from my cousin who lives there. She is roughly the same age as my sister. If she were alive today, my sister would thus probably look like this. We all looked very similar to each other, as you can see. She lived in Hostouň with her relatives or with somebody. I don’t remember precisely what she said, but my dad allegedly stayed with them for about two days. But then this woman or aunt of my cousin's told him: ´Look Franta, you cannot stay here, you know what's happening.´ So he left, and then he was apparently hiding for few more days somewhere in the quarry by the road to Hřebeč. There is a road between Hostouň and Hřebeč, and he was hiding there. Then he was hiding in the forests near Unhošť. And there... he had no more food, and so he wanted to exchange food ration stamps for bread. But he ran into this gamekeeper Černý who turned him in. Dad was then taken to Kladno and to Prague, and he was executed with the workers from the night shift and with the Horák family and Stříbrný family at the shooting range in Kobylisy.”

  • “At that time I was with my mom visiting my aunt, the reason for it being that pediatrician MUDr. Frič had his office on the first floor of the building where my aunt lived. Aunt even suggested to my mom that we both spend the night in her place and go home the next morning, instead of returning so late in the evening. But mom refused, saying that dad was to come home after his night shift. He worked as a so-called white brick-layer, he was repairing the inner surfaces of blast furnaces in the Poldi factory. We thus returned home in the evening on June 9, because mother said that she had to cook dinner for dad.”

  • “It went past me. Fortunately. I am so grateful that I have such a bad memory. Perhaps it is a self-preserving process, because it has kept my mental integrity, and personally I am therefore thankful for it.”

  • Celé nahrávky
  • 6

    Praha, Tuchlovice, 28.12.2011

    (audio)
    délka: 01:55:38
    nahrávka pořízena v rámci projektu Stories of 20th Century
Celé nahrávky jsou k dispozici pouze pro přihlášené uživatele.

The one who survives is the winner.

S tetičkou v kojeneckém ústavu v Krči 1942-1943
S tetičkou v kojeneckém ústavu v Krči 1942-1943
zdroj: VF

Jiří Pitín was born April 23, 1942 in Lidice, and at the time of the Lidice tragedy he was only six weeks old. At first he was transported to Terezín, and subsequently interned at the infant care institute in Prague-Krč together with some other children from Lidice. His father František was hiding for several days, but he was captured and shot in Kobylisy. His mother took her life in the concentration camp Ravensbrück. His elder sister Marie died in Chelmno with other children from Lidice. After the war, his mother‘s elder sister Marie Kvasničková began to take care of him. He graduated in electrical engineering, and then he studied history at the Philosophical Faculty in Prague for several semesters. For many years, he worked as a salesman of audio systems. He is now retired and works for the board of the local chapter of the Union of Freedom Fighters in Prague-Nusle.