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Deportations of 1941 and 1949

The waves of deportations in 1941 and 1949 took away many residents of the Land of Suiti and destroyed their lives and many families. They did not discriminate between infants, children and the elderly. The statistics of 1941 are especially terrible. 70 people were taken (24 in Alšvanga, 10 in Basi, 19 in Gudenieki and 17 in Jūrkalne). 23 of them, men in their prime, were dragged into the conveyor of the Vyatlag death camp in the Kirov region. Really in a death camp, because out of 23, only one (!) survived. Some had already died half a year after their arrest. Others lasted a little longer… but in the end, they remained forever in the foreign land of Russia.

The 47 who were deported to Krasnoyarsk and Novosibirsk regions fared relatively better. Six died. The rest, after 15, 16, 17 years of exile and slavery, remained alive. With a damaged biography, health, but alive. Nine of the exiles tried to run away, some then hid for several years. However, they were all caught and brought back to Siberia. All the escapees survived. Maybe they had a stronger will?

The deportation conveyor of 1949 was already spinning with a completely different capacity. A total of 403 people were deported (Alšvanga 190, Basi 45, Gudenieki 145, Jūrkalne 23). There are no more records of anyone running away. Some men and one woman ended up in the camps: Gorlag, Unžlag, Noriļlag, Kargopollag, Dubravlag, Vyatlag, Vorkutlag, Peščanlag, Mehreņlag… A total of 10 people, all of whom survived. Of the 393 deported to the Omsk region, lives of 52 ended in Siberia. Mostly elderly people. The last person from Siberia returned already in 1964.

Such was this harsh and terrible time. When betrayal was valued higher than honor and respect. Let us not forget these people whose destinies and lives were caught up and often destroyed in this. And let’s also learn from these pages of our history. In the following sections, you can see the complete lists of deported.