Andreeva Katina (Cveta)

Katina was the daughter of Kuzman Andreev and the grand daughter of Nikola commander from the village of Mokreni, Lerin region. She grew up in the dark days of the Metaxas dictatorship. At that time the great persecution of the Macedonians had reached a position of no exit. "Either become a Greek or you die," shouted the gendarme cracking the whip. The old grandmothers would communicate with signals to their children.

Katina was about 11 at that time. However, one day she too experienced the gendarme's whip. An appeal was stuck on the door of the local council, "Long live mother land Bulgaria - long live King Boris." The gendarmes arrested Katina's father and 5 or 6 others and they tortured them severely.

A friend of Katina's witnessed the mayor and the chief of the police sticking up the appeals [1]. The girl told Katina who then went from house to house to spread the news. The gendarmes caught her and, as she was, barefoot and in her patched and mended dress, dragged her to the council building and they began to interrogate her…

"Tell us who told you that we stuck up the appeals."

"I will not tell."

"Tell us or we will beat you like we beat your father...

"I will not tell."

The gendarmes went mad at the unexpected resistance and began to beat her. But she did not permit even one word to leave her lips.


September 1944… the Nazi occupation is in its last days. The villages, one after the other, are liberated… on the footpaths and in the squares the ELAS-ists, Macedonians and Greeks, arm in arm are singing

"For liberation of the people…

" In the villages the festivities began. The Macedonian villages began to open up to the partisans. It was a time when the name 'communist' opened boundaries of the racial hatred, it spoke of the happiness of the Macedonian people, of all...

One day in the Kailar village of Empori, the whole population and that of the surrounding villages had gathered. The EPON members from the village Mokreni were for the first time in the life of the Macedonians to present the drama, "Macedonian Blood Wedding." The drama, as advertised, would show the cruelty of the Ottoman Turks and the heroism of the Macedonian woman, who in the role of Cveta battles the Turks and prevails in the end.

The curtain went up. The old, the young and children sit open-mouthed, many with tears in their eyes from happiness, and follow the Macedonian drama. The biggest impression was made by the young girl who played the role of Cveta…

"Wow! Who is this girl who is acting so well?"

The villagers from Mokreni who were there explained.

"It is young Kate. The youngest daughter of Kusman Andreev. The granddaughter of Kole the commander."

From one to another they told who she was. And when the drama was at an end, the whole crowd called her Cveta. Cveta from here, Cveta from there, two or three more presentations of that drama in the surrounding villages and Kate's name was now changed to that of the role.

From then even her grandmother did not call her Kate. She called her "Cveta" as did the others.

Her grandmother was very happy at that time. She dug out the photo that had belonged to Nikola and hung it up in the living room.

Everything indicated that the troubles had come to an end. But unexpectedly dark times came again. And Nikola's photo, a symbol of the changing times, was hidden again. Delie, the notorious terrorist, came to Mokreni. The men and women hid; the old went along the road with their heads bowed and when they met, they whispered "Good day" in Macedonian.

Cveta continued her dedicated work for CPG, for the ideals of EPON. She handed out appeals for CPG, she wrote battle cries on the walls of the local council… she gathered the young people and left the village and there in the free air they sang about the beauty and happiness of the world, the new battles.

The police arrested her and tortured her cruelly. But Cveta that same night got the young people of the village together and continued her revolutionary activities. The police aimed to arrest her again. But the young Cveta did not fall into the hands of the police. Along with the other young people, they took the honest road and headed off to Vich.

Cveta joined DAG and quickly became a leading commissar. She participated in more than 90 battles in Vich, Gramos, Sinichko, Konica and elsewhere. She distinguished herself many times for her extraordinary bravery, daring, decisiveness, and self sacrifice. She became a sub-lieutenant because of her bravery. She was among the top women of DAG and her chest was covered with bravery medals.

In 1949 Cveta's battalion set off for Kulkuturja, a mountain between Neret and Trsie. Filled with happiness and enthusiasm she was among the leaders. "We will decimate them," she would say. And they did take the mountain. That was the power of our fighters. And in the fire of the battle, Cveta, without concern for the danger, threw herself into the battle fire and was heavily wounded. And when they moved her from the battlefield she asked: "Did we take the mountain? Are we holding it?" From Kulkuturija to the place where her soul finally departed her body, she thought only of the battle, the mountain, her comrades.

Cveta fought heroically, fell heroically, teaching the others - men and women - how one should fulfil one's debt to the homeland, to one's people. She was twice honoured with a decoration for bravery and entered the pantheon of the heroes.

[1] Similar provocations were carried out by the Greek government in many Macedonian villages in Popozhani, Vrbeni, and other villages of the Lerin region, for example, Bulgarian newspapers were sent to certain people so as to justify the arrest and torture of Macedonian patriots.


From: For Sacred National Freedom: Portraits Of Fallen Freedom Fighters

© 2009

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For Sacred National Freedom: Portraits Of Fallen Freedom Fighters