‘My Mum had a sister. Now I can’t tell you if she was younger or elder. Perhaps, she was younger. Mum used to visit her, and she used to put ten potatoes into Mum’s pocket or bosom, or somewhere, secretly, without her husband’s knowledge. Then, Mum would visit her one time, and wouldn’t visit another time. So, she continued going to her sister’s that way, but once her sister said, ‘Sister, dear, now I can’t give you anything, because I’m afraid. We’re running out of potato in the cellar. I can’t help you anymore.’
Olha Moroz (Ivanchuk) (1922)
She was born on February 26th, 1922, in the village of Tarasivka (now Kyiv-Svyatoshyn district, Kyiv region). In 1929–1932 Olha studied at a local primary school. In 1937 she started working at a bakery in Kyiv. Later, she worked at the Kyiv Radio Plant. She came back home after the beginning of the war between Germany and the USSR in 1941. In 1942 Olha was taken to Germany to perform forced labours as an Ostarbeiter. She worked at an economy of Gert Blume, a ‘bauer’. In 1945 Olha got married. In 1946 she returned to Ukraine together with her husband. She worked at the Lviv Tinned Food Factory. Olha lives in Lviv.
Aunt’s help during the Holodomor, 1932–1933
The Holodomor in Kyiv region, 1932–1933
‘Well, there was Yurovka two kilometres away from Tarasivka, and the whole village vanished there. All the people either died out or escaped. In some villages, everyone perished. But we lived near Kyiv, so our business wasn’t so bad. My Mum would cut a loaf of bread (now people call loaves of this type ‘bricks’) into three parts, and we would eat our slices. Once I asked her (I was the oldest, my siblings were younger), ‘Mum, give us a little more, one more slice!’ – ‘Well, my dear child,’ she said, ‘you have already eaten a little bit today, and I’ll give you a little more tomorrow. If you eat all the bread today, you will be hungry tomorrow. And what would I give you?’
Kolkhozniks feasting in the village Tarasivka during the Holodomor, 1932–1933
‘They were members of a kolkhoz (a collective farm – translator). Food used to be cooked for them. It was given to those who worked there. Once I was lead to such a feast, but I was brought out immediately. I had a friend who was 5 years older than me. Her brother was a member of Komsomol (the All-Union Leninist Young Communist League – translator). There were lots of children in their family. Once all the kolkhozniks (collective farmers – translator) gathered in a church for a ball. And she took me with her. She sat down. I sat down next to her. But someone came and asked, ‘Who is she?’ And she answered that I was… I don’t know what she actually said. I was lead out. She stayed there. They were fed.’