1 Execution site(s)
Vasyl F., born in 1928, remembers the column of Jews: “I was standing and watching. Where was I supposed to go? Everyone was watching these columns [pass by]. It was such a terrifying reality, such a frightening image! They were in a dreadful state. They were marching without [appropriate] clothing and shoes. They had everything stolen… by the policemen who took away the better clothing and gold or other valuables belonging to the wealthiest [Jews]. People who couldn’t walk were shot. If you could not walk anymore and you fell down, the policeman would shoot you, while the column would continue moving forward. Early [in the morning] people were requisitioned… men had to load [the bodies] on carts, [to transport] and to bury them.” (Witness n°2717, interviewed in Krasnopil on November 20, 2019)
«Sometime in December 1941, a large column of Jews was taken from Liubachivka to Kalendovo. They stayed overnight in the ravine behind the bridge. The next morning, I received an order from the starosta R. and policeman B. to escort the Jews to Novo-Pavlovka. I left with four Jews and I heard the gunshots behind me. […] Once the Jews had arrived at Novo-Pavlovka, the following morning my son was requisitioned to gather the bodies of the Jews that had been killed, but he refused and I went in his place. Along with the policeman Demnychenko. I had to pick up the bodies and throw them on a cart.” [From the deposition of a local villager, Kornei L., native from B.Chaikoka, given on September 13th 1944; SBU archives n°6629, Delo n°23 against the policeman I.Demchenko; Source: A.Kruglov, A.Umansky, I.Shchupak, The Holocaust in Ukraine , « Tkuma », 2016, Dnipro]]
“In December 1941 a large column of Jews was taken through the village of Kalendovo. They stayed overnight in the ravine located close to the bridge. The following day, the column was marched towards the village of Novo-Pavlovka. Jews who couldn’t walk stayed in the ravine once the column left. They were shot and killed by the policemen Demnychenko and Balaban. I saw it with my own eyes from about 100m away. A while after, another group of Jews was killed here by Demnychenko.” [From the deposition of a local villager, Luka Hnatenko, given on September 11th 1944; SBU archives n°6629, Delo n°23 against the policeman I.Demchenko; Source: A.Kruglov, A.Umansky, I.Shchupak, The Holocaust in Ukraine , « Tkuma », 2016, Dnipro]]
Krasnopil, founded in 1795, is located about 170km north east of Mykolaiv. Before the war, the village was divided into two different kolkhozes, each of which had a different name: Chaikivka and Kalendovo. The Jewish population started to settle down in the region in the early 20th century as many Jewish agricultural colonies were established in the area. The majority of them were artisans. They worked in the kolkhoz alongside the non-Jewish population. There was a mill owned by a Jew. The Jewish and non-Jewish children went to the school together. According to the local witnesses interviewed by Yahad-In Unum, two or three families lived in the village of Chaikivka. There is no information on how many Jews lived in Kalendovo back then.
The district was occupied by German and Romanian forces in July-August 1941. The Jews continued to live in their houses until the order issued on December 19th 1941, which stated that all Jews from the district had to be relocated to the Bohdanivka camp. According to the Soviet archives and testimonies collected by Yahad-In Unum, the columns of Jews were taken from Liubashivka to Novo-Pavlovka. People who weren’t strong enough to move forward were shot dead on the spot by the road or at the places where the column stopped overnight. The executions were conducted by the members of the local police, the same ones who escorted the columns from one village to another. The victims’ bodies were gathered by the requisitioned locals and buried on the spot. Such executions lasted from December 1941 until autumn 1943. The exact number of victims was impossible to establish. According to the depositions of the local villagers taken by the Soviet Extraordinary commission, 18 young Jewish women were locked up in the barn and raped, before being killed. As a result of Yahad’s field research, we could identify three execution-burial places, one located near the village of Krasnopil and two others near the village of Zymnytske. The executions near Krasnopil took place in December 1941, in February 1942 and throughout 1943. The victims were buried in anti-tank ditches. Today, there is no memorial on any of the sites.
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