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Life Stories of Czechs Deployed in Norway (35-45)

07/02/2022

With these life stories, we also publish period materials such as photographs, official documents and samples from diaries or letters, as well as selected memories from their stay in Norway, which are kept in the family memory of their descendants.

Many thanks to the descendants for their help in compiling the life stories and providing materials from the estate. Many of them visited us at the Faculty of Arts, Charles University in Prague, others sent the materials by mail or scanned by e-mail. It's a huge help for us!
Thank you for that!

 

45. Ladislav Kohout from Prague, deployed at Bodø, where he dug fortification bunkers.

His whole life he remembered his friends from the city quarter Modřany, with whom he was in Norway. He was one of two hundred czech forced labourers who received compensation for forced labor at the turn of the millennium.

44. Jaroslav Malý from Prague, deployed in Harstad, then in Narvik.

He acted as a link between Czech boys in northern Norway. He married Norwegian and their descendants live in Prague to this day.

43. Jan Hammer from Olomouc, deployed in Trondheim at Sager und Woerner. He was imprisoned in a Norwegian concentration camp for trying to escape to Sweden.

"In 1981, he and his daughter went to visit a Norwegian friend in Trondheim. They traveled with a czech car called "Trabant".

42. Václav Nosek (* 1924 - † 2005) from Opava, deployed in Narvik, Alta and Kirkenes at the Geimer company and since 1944 at the fortress in Oslofjord.

He did not return home until almost a year after the war, as he was returning complicatedly through the Soviet Union.

41. Václav Hönl from Semily, deployed in Mo i Rana, Bodø at Arge Nordmark.

"He brought a box of Swix ski waxes from Norway, which he kept as a rarity."

 

40. Miroslav Chladil from Brno, deployed in Narvik at Arge Zimmermann & Speer.

39. Hubert Mareth from Opava, worked for Geimer in Narvik, Alta and Kirkenes and since 1944 at the fortress in Oslofjord.

He found a bride in Norway with whom he returned to Czechoslovakia and lived in Vítkov. After the birth of three children, they moved to Norway, where their descendants still live.

38. Vladimír Partl from Prague, deployed in Narvik at Ohlendorfische Baugesellschaft.

According to his son: "Although the deployment in Norway took place in difficult conditions, sleeping with many other people in rooms, etc., he liked to remember that time in Norway, the beautiful nature, the Norwegians, who treated the Czechs wonderfully."

37. Josef Schovanec (* 1922 - † 2004) from Čáslav region, deployed to Kirkenes, Alta, Hammerfest to Schuppert.

After returning home, he planned to move to Norway with his Czech family, which was thwarted in 1948.

36. Stanislav Kopal - is not kept in the Organisation Todt's file and before we create a website for unregistered Czechs, we publish the life story and memories here:

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Stanislav Kopal (* 1921 - † 2010) was born on 25-12-1921 in Miličín in the Benešov region into the family of a cotter, as one of 7 children. In his youth, he trained as a butcher with a private entrepreneur. He was deployed to Norway probably at the end of 1942 and was appointed cook in the Todt labor camp in the northernmost county of Finnmark. It is not known in which areas he operated or how his repatriation took place after the liberation of Norway. In 1949 he married Lidmila roz. Mikušová, a trained saleswoman, and they went to work in Prague. They had three children: daughter Stanislava (1949), son Stanislav (1952-1957) and daughter Lidmila (1960). His whole life he worked as a sausage worker in the Prague meat industry. When he went into retirement, he moved from Prague to Miličín, where he was visited regularly by a friend from Norway, Václav Houska. He died in 2010. His descendants live around Prague and in the Netherlands.

  • He started telling his family about his experiences of total deployment in Norway when his eldest granddaughter returned from a visit to Norway.
  • He worked as a cook in Narvik. Once the camp commander caught a bird for him. He prepared it for him on garlic and herbs, and he enjoyed it. In one incident, despite giving a strict ban on potato peeling to hungry Russian prisoners, he was caught by a German soldier who wanted to shoot him. The camp commander prevented this and saved his life.He told him he had done it for the baked bird, but it must never happen again.
  • He bought Norwegian sweaters for his parents and sisters in Norway, but the package never arrived to Miličín.
  • He told the family that some young men could not bear the tragedy of war, separation from their loved ones, long polar nights, and committed suicide.
  • After the war, his little daughter found his father's war diary from Norway on the ground, which he wrote carefully throughout his stay in Norway. When she showed it to her mother, she threw it in the stove.

Resources:

Norwegian National Archives, Oslo.

Family-owned estate, Prague,

L. Hamplová, E-mail communication and personal meetings, January 2022.

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With the help of descendants compiled by: V. Hingarová

(pictures from family archives)

 

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