Lisopil | Rivne

Apolinaria M., born in 1930: “I stayed under a bush watching the shooting. My mother was chasing me away because she was afraid that I would be shot as well”. © Victoria Bahr /Yahad-In Unum Witness with Yahad’s team on the execution site of Jews in Lisopil. © Victoria Bahr /Yahad-In Unum Execution site of Jews from Kostopil. © Victoria Bahr /Yahad-In Unum

Execution of Jews from Kostopil in Lisopil

1 Execution site(s)

Kind of place before :
Woods
Memorials :
Yes
Period of occupation:
1941-1944
Number of victims :
Unknown

Witness interview

Apolinaria M., born in 1930, remembered, “Many Jews managed to escape beforehand. As a result, other Jews were forced to wear black patches on their clothes. I remember one Jew came to our house. My mother took off this patch and threw it in the fireplace. Without this sign, they could not know whether he was a Jew or a Pole or a Ukrainian. After the execution, a group of 18 Jews came to see my father. There were women, men and children among them. My father knew them very well. It was dangerous to hide Jews because everyone would be murdered if they were caught. However, my father hid them in different places, but the majority stayed in the barn. My mother secretively brought them food.” (Testimony N°1796, interviewed in Lisopil, on August 4, 2013)

Historical note

Lisopil is located about 30 km north east of Rivne. Little is known about the prewar Jewish community. According to the local witnesses, a number of Jews lived in the village.  They worked in agriculture and all of the children, Jewish and non-Jewish, went to the same school. The Germans occupied the village at the end of June, 1941.

Holocaust by bullets in figures

According to the witness, the Jews were moved to the Kostopil ghetto, created on October 5, 1941. The ghetto numbered about 4,500 inmates from Kostopil and neighboring villages. It was divided in three sections: one for male inmates fit to work; another one for women, children, and elderly people, and the third one for artisans and specialist. All three parts of the ghetto were fenced in with barbed wire. Apparently, a number of Jews was taken from the Kostopil ghetto and brought back to Lisopil where they were murdered in the woods. It was impossible to establish the exact day when the execution took place, but most likely was carried out in late August 1942.  According to an eyewitness of the shooting interviewed by Yahad, the Jews were marched from Kostopil while escorted by Germans. There were men, women, and children among them. The pit, which was 2m deep, was dug on the night before by requisitioned locals. The Jews had to walk on the plank put across the pit in groups and the Germans fired at them with sub machine guns. There were about 25 Germans. 

For more information about the execution in Kostopil please refer to the corresponding profile

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