1 Execution site(s)
Zinaida L., born in 1932: “Several columns of Jews passed through the village during the occupation. I saw one of them. It was guarded by gendarmes on horses. There were very many Jews in it. There were men, women, and children. Some carried bundles with them. They were hungry and thirsty so they would try to drink water from the nearby stream but when a gendarme saw them, they were severely beaten, and they had to rejoin the column. Local people would throw them food. Carts were requisitioned for those who were too weak to walk. But those carts would stop at the outskirts of the village where a huge pit had been dug by local premilitaries. From those carts, Jews were directly thrown into the pit. They were still alive; they were screaming but they were buried anyway (…)” (Witness N°112, interviewed in Rublenita, on May 21, 2013)
Țepilova is a small village in Soroca District in northern Moldova. It is located about 6km from Soroca. Soroca was home to one of the oldest and largest Jewish communities in Bessarabia. In 1930, 36% of Soroca’s total population was Jewish. According to YIU’s witness Zinaida L., born in 1932, there was only one Jewish family living in Țepilova before the war. The family owned the only shop in the village. There was no synagogue or cemetery in the village
According to YIU’s witness Zinaida L., born in 1932, the one Jewish family from Țepilova managed to leave the village before the arrival of Romanian troops. Its fate remains unknown. During the occupation, several columns of Jews passed through Țepilova. Zinaida recalls one column came from the direction of Cosăuți. It was escorted by Romanian gendarmes on horses. There were hundreds of people in the column: women, men, and children. They carried some bundles with them. Those who were unable to walk were loaded on carts driven by requisitioned premilitaries from Țepilova and surrounding areas. At the outskirts of the village, near the main road, a large pit had been dug by the requisitioned premilitaries. Exhausted people from the carts were thrown into the pit and buried alive by the premilitaries, while the column advanced. The bodies of the victims remain in that mass grave till today. There is no memorial at the site.
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