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Shock Changes Lives Forever

This story dates back to the 20th century when my mom was just two years old in 1913. It involves my grandma my mom’s mom and my grandfather whom I never met. My grandma was called Emily and my granddad Martin. I might make a note here that it was very interesting that my hubby and my soul mate was also Martin. It was the time of Russian rule in Latvia and my granddad was in the Russian Army as an officer. My grandfather had a problem with the Russians he was a dead ringer for Czar Nicholas of Russia. We all know the history and what happened later on to the Romanovs. 

The army assigned my grandfather for duty all the way beyond the Urals in Russian Siberia. He took his wife and daughter with him. My grandma gave birth to another child there and the baby died shortly afterward. My mom remembered the hot summers and the bitterly cold winters. This was another reason why when my mom grew up and knew she was on a list to be deported to Siberia she fled from her homeland.

One day my grandfather was called before a committee. Heaven only knows what my grandfather had been guilty of but I believe it was more a matter of his resemblance. They simply put him in front of a firing squad and shot him. This left his wife with one dead and buried baby and my mom Elvira alone and far from home in a strange land.

That night when my grandmother, Emily went to bed after getting the news of her husband her hair turned white overnight. The following day she couldn’t function or even think and gave my mother over to the neighbors to watch until she could pull herself together. When she finally did she was able to bring herself and her daughter back to Riga. I often find myself wondering if she was compensated by the army for what was still owed to my grandfather. When we came here to live in 1994 my mom actually wanted to take a trip over the Urals to find her father’s grave and bring him back to rebury his remains in Latvia. I talked her out of it quickly. I don’t think anyone could ever find the burial spot from that time.

Another photo of my grandma and me but in this photo you can see how really beautiful my grandma was.

  • Question of

    Do you believe that sudden shock can change your life?

    • Yes
    • No
  • Question of

    Have you ever experienced a tragedy that was hard to overcome?

    • Yes
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