Josef Novosad

* 1925

  • "Before the fight started, before the shooting started, it was a difficult feeling, but after that it was alright. But before it started, it was always a difficult moment. That's when you were shaking like an aspen leaf. But once they started fighting, then it didn't matter, then no one cared. That's how I see it today and that's how I saw it before. We had a brigade commissar called Vojáček, his nickname was Taras. He was older than me, but he liked me as a friend. We used to meet - I as a normal soldier and he as the political commander of the brigade. I met him once in the forest when they were burning villages down below and they were shooting at us in the forest. He was standing by one tree, I was by another, and he was shaking. I said: 'Josef, what's wrong with you?' He was a commander, but we were friends. He just shook his head. I said, 'Don't worry about it, it'll pass and it'll be all right again.' So we comforted each other. Me as a kid - I was a kid compared to him because I was about 19 years old at the time and he was in his 40s. It's hard to describe and hard to talk about."

  • "There was a village called Dubrava and we went there. The unit, the whole brigade, was supposed to be somewhere else, but the headquarters thought... In short, it was always about weapons, to get them somewhere. When we got there, we suddenly found ourselves surrounded and we had to retreat. So we were retreating from that hill from the village of Dubrava and we were already in the neighbouring village, down in that lowland. I went with Staňa with a machine gun. Staňa went next to the fence and I went next to him. Staňa suddenly screamed! It was rather strange sound. I looked and he was purple and blue and crouched on the ground. I called rescue and immediately I spread my blanket and they took him away. He was hit somewhere in his collarbone and in his crotch. He was older than me and he was calling for his dad to help him. But his dad couldn't help him because he was far away, so Staňa died. And there were many like that. I've seen many dead men! Many of them fell right in front of me."

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    Olomouc, 22.02.2022

    délka: 03:03:18
    nahrávka pořízena v rámci projektu Stories of the region - Central Moravia
Celé nahrávky jsou k dispozici pouze pro přihlášené uživatele.

I haven‘t been able to watch the dead even on TV since

Josef Novosad, Belgrade, 1945
Josef Novosad, Belgrade, 1945
zdroj: archiv pamětníka

Josef Novosad was born on 18 March 1925 in the village of Mali Zdenci in Slavonia in the then Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes. His parents, Jan and Josefa, were descendants of Czech emigrants who came to the area in search of better living conditions at the beginning of the 20th century. Josef spent only the first two years of his life in the village of Mali Zdenci, because in 1927 his parents bought a house with an eight-hectare farm in the neighbouring village of Veliki Zdenci where they moved with their four children. In 1943, at the age of 18, Josef Novosad joined the partisan units. He fought in the ranks of the 1st Czechoslovak Brigade of Jan Žižka of Trocnov until January 1945 and then served as a member of the personal guard of NOAJ Commander-in-Chief Josip Broz Tito until September 1945. In November 1945 he emigrated to Czechoslovakia. Until 1947 he lived in Frélichov (from 1949 Jevišovka), where he also married Emilie Končelová. The couple then moved to a farm in nearby Litobratřice, where they farmed privately before joining a Unified Agricultural Cooperative (JZD) in 1950. In 1954 they left the Cooperative and farmed privately again for nearly four years. However in 1957, they were forced to re-join the Cooperative. Then they moved to Střelice (today part of Uničov). Josef Novosad then worked as a shunter for the railways, as a grinder in Uničov machine works and in the Papcel factory in Litovel. At the time of filming in 2022, he was living as a war veteran together with his wife Emilie in the Military Hospital in Olomouc.