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Константин Николаевич Вашкевич / Konstantin Nikolaewitsch Waschkewitsch Edit

Born 14.2.1906 in Olgowo
Died 1945 in Gusen

Biography

Konstantin Nikolaevich Vashkevich was born on 14 February 1906 in the village of Olgovo in the Dmitrovsky district of Moscow oblast. His father Nikokai Alexeevich worked as the municipal clerk. His mother Vera Konstantinovna was a seamstress. The family had seven children, five sons and two daughters. All the children received a good education. In 1931 Konstantin married Mariya Yakovlevna Alyanova, who worked as a timekeeper at the ‘First of May’ woollen mill, where Konstantin was an accountant. They had two children: a son (Vladimir, born in 1931) and a daughter (Tamara, born in 1936). At the age of two Vladimir contracted meningitis and lost his hearing. Konstantin did everything possible to aid the development and education of his disabled son. The family moved to Moscow and his son went to the best school in Moscow for children with speech, language and hearing defects. After finishing this school Vladimir worked in a printing press and received the distinction of ‘Meritorious Cultural Worker’. Konstantin was a good and caring father. He was universally respected and was always ready to help when his help was needed.

Before the Great Patriotic War Konstantin was employed as head accountant of the dacha administration (Mosdachtrest) of the Moscow city council (Mossovet). He was short-sighted. After the outbreak of war he was drafted into the home guard on 5 July 1941. From his first and only three letters it was clear that he was on his way to the Leningrad front. After this no more letters arrived. All further details about what happened to him come from other people.

First a comrade of his from the front wrote to say that Konstantin had fallen before his very eyes. After this his wife received official notification that her husband, the soldier Konstantin Nikolaevich Vashkevich, had been reported missing in action at the front in November 1941. And once a friend of his came to us and told us that he and Konstantin had been together in a concentration camp. Konstantin had escaped from this camp and the friend wanted to know whether he had come home.

After the war we found a letter in our postbox from another friend, in which he told us that he and Konstantin had been in the Gusen II concentration camp, and that Konstantin had been collected from the barracks on 23 (or 29) April 1945 and never returned. The friend wrote that this how those prisoners were collected who had been earmarked for extermination.

The details in this letter were later confirmed. At the end of April 2012 we received an answer from the International Tracing Service that Konstantin Vashkevich had indeed still been in the Mauthausen and Gusen II camps (prisoner number 110033) in April 1945, and that unfortunately there was no further information about him. We were also told that from 22 May 1942 to an unknown date he worked as a machine cutter for the VOMAG company in Plauen and that on 16 November 1944 he was transferred by the State Police in Plauen to the Mauthausen (Gusen II) concentration camp, where he was still alive at the beginning of April 1945.

Konstantin Vashkevich was a good citizen, friend, husband, father and son. Throughout her life, his wife Mariya hoped that he was still alive, and waited for him. May the memory of the victims of the fascist torture chambers never fade.

 

Svetlana Vashkevich

Translation into English: Joanna White

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