My grandfather was born in 1939 in Delmenhorst. Two years later, his father, a public servant, was transferred to Orlová (in those days: Orlau), the very west of today’s Czech Republic. In 1945 the family had to flee in the direction of Germany. In the following interview, my grandfather tells about his childhood in Orlová and about his memories concerning the family’s escape back to Delmenhorst.
Gert Malerius grew up in East Prussia, the town of Pillau. Close to the end of World War II, he had to flee with his mother and brothers. He tells how they fled as well as the living conditions afterward.
I’ve heard stories about World War II since my childhood. So during the project, I decided to learn more about my ancestors in those trying times. I am going to start with the stories of my grandmother Svitlana Pylypivna about her parents. My mother is a history teacher, and the issues of historical memory and the history of Odessa during WWII are of particular interests to her. Therefore she helped me voice the video and process it.
The history of my family reflects life in a totalitarian regime. All that my great grandfather and great-grandmother went through shows and demonstrates the lack of respect for a human being, invasion of privacy and persecution, violates morality, human rights and freedoms. That is why, under the Soviet rule, millions of people were subjected to the arbitrariness of the totalitarian state, and many were never able to reunite with their families.
This is an interview to find out and record what happened in my family during World War II.
Born on June 17, 1937, in Lyck (today’s Poland). Escaped January 1945 from East Prussia to West Germany together with his mother, younger sister and cousins. In 1947/48 his father returned from the frontline.