“It was winter 1939. They were evicting a village near Maheriv. A family could take only what they could fit on the carriage. It was very cold. They took families to Dobrosyn, and then on the train to deportation. They evicted the whole village. I think the village was Bila. They were taking people away in the middle of the night. I was on my way to Mahera and saw how they were transporting people. They took the whole family, together with little kids. Families took with them all they could fit on the carriage. First they brought all these people to Dobrosyn. They wouldn’t let people take their belongings from the carriage. So they took only what they could hold in their hands. Very many kids died on their way there. Those who died were thrown off the train.”
Oksana Demchyna (Polyuha) (1922)
She was born on June 7th, 1922, in Lviv. Starting from 1928 she studied at “Ridna shkola” named after duke Lev. In 1934 she moved together with her family to a village Lavrykiv, Ravskyi province (now Zhovkva district, Lviv region). She continued her studies in the Polish school in Zhovkva (6th and 7th grades). After finishing the 7th grade in the school in Lavrykiv she came back to Lviv. In 1936-1939 she studied at Lviv industrial college. In 1939-1941she lived in a village Lavrykiv. During German occupation she worked as a typist, cooperated with the underground of Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists. From 1945 and up till now she lives in Lviv.
Deportation of citizens from Zhovkva region, 1939
Flee of the Bolsheviks from Western Ukraine, 1941
“They were running away. One of them was from the village Kryve, so he came to that village, came to the priest and said: “Vasyl, I’m here to kill you”. And he replied: “Just give me a chance to confess my sins”. But there were people from the village who told him: “Stepan, what are you doing? His five little kids died. Are you crazy or what?” He replied: “Fine”. And then he left. At that time brother and headmaster thought that there are no one left, so they walked to the field. Those Bolsheviks attacked them and tortured. They had 17 bayonets each. Brother and headmaster Deputat. And there was also a boy named Kutsa, in whose house brother hid when he was in the underground forces. The boy was 12 years old. He climbed the tree and saw everything that happened. They tortured them and got on their horses and left. On the field they caught three more people – a woman and two men. They tied their hands to the saddle and it was like this: one in the front, then those three tied, and the fifth one behind everyone. They drove them like this to Zhovkva. On their way they also caught Yosyf Demchyna. They tied him also. And drove all of them together to Zhovkva. And then they tortured all four of them there.”
The Ukrainian Insurgent Army fight near Pyryatyn, 1944
“On August 19th (Savior of the Apple Feast Day) Bolsheviks surrounded the village. They were going to Pyryatyn. There was a battle. Our troops killed many of them and ran away at night. There were two hundred of them. They moved towards Uhniv. Brother Borys, as soon as the Germans came, participated in the battle in Karov with the Germans. Then he went to Pyryatyn. He also participated in the Pyryatyn battle. He was injured there and sent to Uhniv. There he received some treatment and worked in administrative and supply section. Where he worked somebody told official bodies whom he really was and he was tortured in Fosy Richytski. – Who tortured him? – TheBolsheviks. They brought him to Uhnev, tied him to a carriage and drove through the whole Ugnev for people to recognize who it was. There was one man – Tselevych – an engineer from Uhnev. I met him in Lviv and he told me that Boris is dead, that they tortured him. And then on the second day they came again. They were walking in a semicircle. They surrounded all villages and pushed people to Pyryatyn, and there they burnt them all. They also killed 70 men there. They killed them whenever they would find them. It was horrible. I was 4 miles away from the Pyryatyn battle.”