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Maria P., born in 1935, remembers: “At the moment when the Germans rounded-up the Jews two Jewish women managed to hide. One of them hid in the basement of the church. I remember her very well because I brought her food on the sly. She was native from Leningrad. Although there were Germans in the church and it was very dangerous but I managed to pass her food through a ventilation hole. Another woman hid in the attic of a villager where she stayed until the Germans left. They did not stay here long. They arrived in August 1942 and in early January 1943 they left.” (Testimony n°713, interviewed in Staromarievka, on May 18, 2017)
« In September 1942, at the period when our village was occupied by Germans, at 10am I saw on my own eyes three covered trucks. The Gestapo men accompanied by a kommandant, started to gather all the Jews from the Staro-Marievka district in front of the Kommandantur. After, they were all loaded into the sheet covered trucks and assassinated with the exhaust fumes. The children were injected with the lethal liquid and thrown into the trucks. The victims’ corpses were transported to the pits in the sand quarry. Once on the site, all the corpses were thrown inside the pits. I suppose that the Jews were gassed. In total, 83 Jews were killed. They were guilty of any crime, they were just loaded into the trucks and murdered. » [Deposition of a local villager Andrey K., given to State Soviet Commission (ChGK) in 1943; RG22.002:Fond 7021, Opis17, Delo 11]
Kizilov is a small village located 7km north of Staromarievka, and 20km north east of Stavropol. The village of Straomarievka was found in 1786. There were no Jews in Kizilov or Staromarievka before the war. When the Soviet Union was invaded by Germans many refugees, including the Jews, arrived to the village.
The area was occupied by the German forces in early August 1942. As a result of the field investigation we believe that the mass grave located near the village of Kizilov is the same mass grave described in the archives, due to their proximity. However, according to the witness interviewed by Yahad about 150 victims were first brought to Kizilov and locked up for two or three days in a local Klub. The, they were loaded in the gas vans and suffocated on the way.
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