1 Execution site(s)
Valentyna S., born in 1930, remembered: "I saw two Ukrainians of the village administration bring five Jewish girls from the center of Gorynhrad to the Horyn river. They were classmates. They searched the girls from head to toe, forced them to raise their arms and go into the water. They beat them with sticks so that they fell underwater and drowned. The bodies floated and were taken away by the current." (Testimony N°1403, interviewed in Gorynhrad, on April 4th , 2012)
Gorynhrad I is located about 25 km east of Rivne and about 95 km east of Lutsk. In 1784 there were 40 Jews in the village, in 1897 there were about 540 Jews, which made up more than half of the local population. In 1921, the Jewish population dropped to 307 Jews due to relocation and immigration. Gorynhrad I used to be a Jewish shtetl with two synagogues and a Jewish cemetery. The cemetery is almost nonexistent nowadays, only a few gravestones can be spotted. According to the witness, the majority of Jews were engaged in business. However, there were many artisans, such a blacksmiths, carpenters, shoemakers. The Jewish children went to school with non-Jews; however each nationality was separated for religious classes. The village was occupied by German forces on June 25, 1941.
According to the witnesses interviewed by Yahas-In Unum, shortly after the Germans’ arrival all Jews were forced to wear round yellow patches on their chests and backs. The field research could not confirm information about the pogrom and the killing of 60 Jews conducted on July 6, 1941 as mentioned by the Soviet archives. According to the local residents, all Jews were moved to the Tuchyn ghetto, located 8km away from the village, where they were shot afterward. It happened in July-August 1941. Nevertheless, there were still isolated shootings of the Jews who stayed in hiding but were found at the end. These shootings remained undocumented until now. With the help of the local eyewitnesses of the shooting, we could identify the killing site of the two daughters of a Jewish shop owner, Shemshel, killed behind the shop. Another group of five Jewish girls was shot and drowned in the river. Their corpses floated in the river and were never found.
For more information about the killings in Tuchyn please refer to the corresponding profile.
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