«Jewish Observer»
January 2002
5762 Shvat

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We gathered near the synagogue building on the 29th of November, 2001, and in a slow column of 6 hundred people we moved to the former Sennaya Square of the town. The day was sunny and completely different from the one 60 years ago, when more than 7 thousand children, young men and women, pregnant women and people of very old age were driven to this square by the Gestapo order. The tragedy of the Jewish population of Kerch and the nearest villages started since that day.

We were standing in the Sennaya Square and listening to the speech of Boris Kopushin, chairman of the local Jewish community, a member of the Council of regions, JCU, who opened the memorial meeting. All of us felt the people's grief which has never been justified by anyone or anything. Every word of the speaker was based on the facts taken from the documents of the Extraordinary Commission for disclosing and investigating fascist crimes in Kerch. On that memorable day a lot of Kerch people of different nationalities joined us. The information they heard on that day became a bitter lesson for them for the rest of their lives. Our way continued from the Sennaya Square to the place of mass executions in December, 1941, - Bagerovsky ditch.

One kilometer long, four meters wide, two meters deep and filled with mutilated human bodies up to the top. That horrible sight opened to the landing soldiers who set Kerch free on the 30th of December, 1941.

For many of us this ditch is the place of our relatives' death. We come here with flowers and small stones of memory, with our bitter thoughts, trying to imagine our relatives alive. We shall always remember them ...


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