Jiřina Liebermannová

* 1936

  • "My daughter cried on the train from Ostrava. Her eleven-year-old son was comforting her. It was perhaps cruel of us. The older daughter was already married. She had to get married when she was twenty. We left our first granddaughter, who was born in 1982. It was difficult. But as I told you the first time I went to that Bolivia, I have a task ahead of me, that's it, and I have to accomplish it. I didn't dwell on it anymore and I didn't question it. I was doing it all to accomplish that task. I no longer debated whether to stay or split up. I don't think the idea of divorce came up during our marriage, no matter what."

  • "My husband successfully finished his university studies, he only had a visa until a certain time and then he had to leave. He left in August 1966. I was already pregnant with our second daughter and had to stay here for ten months. During our marriage we experienced great trials of cohabitation. I could have stayed here, but I took it, we didn't even think of divorcing. Communicating by telegram, that was horrible. My husband sent me a plane ticket to Bolivia, where I went alone in early August. My daughter was eight months old and the other four and a half. Now it's common to fly, back then it was completely unknown. I flew via Dakar, where I had to change, it was CSA Dakar. Our airline had a hotel there, about thirty kilometres from the airport. There was nobody there, the kitchen was closed. I thought we had to eat something, so I went out on the street with the kids and I experienced the third world for the first time. There's a black man sitting there with a newspaper and five onions in front of him. I looked at it and I thought, 'Jesus Christ'. So we were hungry and went back to the hotel. I had to wake up at two o'clock at night, my suitcases were upstairs, two kids, I realized I am not able to carry it. I went down to the porter's lodge where a black man was sleeping on a bench. I told him to help me with my bags. He came with me, we got in the elevator, and he stroked my blond hair in the elevator. I'll tell you, I've never been more scared than I was that day, I was completely surrendered. Nobody was anywhere, the kids were asleep, he was just stroking his hair. Then I left, my husband was waiting for me in Rio de Janeiro, then we flew to Bolivia. Bolivia, everyone knows it now, we already know the whole world, but for me it was a terrible surprise."

  • "At one point the Russian front was approaching from Hutisk. They hit, imagine, our cottage. I have this visual memory, fortunately it didn't catch fire. As the windows were on the attic, it all rolled out, a big hole, it's written in the chronicle that our house was hit. There is a slope in front of our house, that's where the German who was firing towards Rysa at those Russians sat down. They hit our cottage, because they must have found the German there. Then the Russians appeared in our house. I know that Mr. Romanek went to meet the Russian. He was afraid, he didn't know. He went to my mother, who was sleeping with my brother in the living room, and she had a bicycle there, and he put his hand on the seat, but he left it alone. I guess he felt sorry for his mother. One of the Russians died, he was shot in our street, then they put him next to the opposite building. He was lying there, all pale. As kids we went to see."

  • Celé nahrávky
  • 1

    Horní Bečva, 15.09.2021

    délka: 02:13:54
    nahrávka pořízena v rámci projektu Stories of the region - Central Moravia
  • 2

    Horní Bečva, 17.09.2021

    délka: 01:40:56
    nahrávka pořízena v rámci projektu Stories of the region - Central Moravia
Celé nahrávky jsou k dispozici pouze pro přihlášené uživatele.

During totalitarianism, my family and I moved across the ocean

Jiřina Liebermannová during filming for Memory of Nations, September 2021, Horní Bečva
Jiřina Liebermannová during filming for Memory of Nations, September 2021, Horní Bečva
zdroj: Memory of Nations

Jiřina Liebermannová was born on 15 March 1936 in Berehovo in Subcarpathian Russia as the older of two children to the Kuklišinas. She was born into a mixed marriage, her mother was Czech, her father Ruthenian. Dad, Michal Kuklišin, worked as a gendarme, mom Libuše, nee. Kružíková, was a housewife. On 15 March 1939 they had to leave Subcarpathian Russia and went to Rožnov pod Radhoštěm to live with their mother‘s parents. Her father was drafted to Germany, where he had to work as a fireman. The family in Rožnov lived through the liberation, but their house was hit and damaged. From 1951 to 1956 Jiřina studied piano, dulcimer and organ at the conservatory in Kroměříž. In 1957 she was accepted as a dulcimer teacher at the Ostrava Conservatory. In Ostrava in 1961 she met her future husband, Emil Rosendo Liebermann, who was from Bolivia and studied at the University of Music in Ostrava. In 1963 they married. They lived in Bolivia from 1967 to 1973, and in Mexico from 1983 to 2017. Jiřina Liebermannová has been teaching music all her life. She and her husband raised three children, and in 2021, at the time of filming, they lived in Rožnov pod Radhoštěm.