Tashovski Metodi

August 1946. He woke early in the Solun prison. Along with another comrade they loaded us into a truck and took us to the Lerin prisons. When we reached Lerin it was late afternoon. A warm sun was shining.

In the yard of the prison old comrades with whom he had fought against the German occupiers in Lerin greeted us. In the wide yard prisoners were walking back and forth; groups of two or three until the guard blew his whistle for them to go back into the prison.

An old comrade from Ekshisovo walked toward us and greeted us. He met the comrade who was next to me. "He is Metodi who in the EAM period was a people's prosecutor in the people's court in our village. He spoke in the court like a real lawyer and made correct determinations. Everyone was happy with the people's prosecutor."

We spoke with the comrade Metodi. He asked "Where have you come from today?"

"From the Solun prisons."


"For prosecution."

"I was released a few days ago but the same night, as soon as I arrived home they caught me and brought me here. That was because the partisans killed two gendarmes on the Ekshisovo hills."

The guard's whistle blew and the conversation was cut off.

They all knew Metodi. He was one optimistic fighter. He had a limitless faith in the people's power and in the people's victory.

He greeted us with the words - "The people will win," and he took his fist up to his head.

His wife came from the village every Saturday and brought him food. One night they took him to another prison known by the name "Redzhi". Once the English arrived, they opened two more prisons in Lerin. One was the old prison next to the courthouse and the other in the Toli inn and the bigger one in "Redzhi" - an old tobacco store next to the train station. About five hundred comrades (men and women) from Lerin were jammed into those prisons. A huge pogrom was carried out against the Greek and Macedonian anti fascists in that region and in the whole of Greece.

After a few days Metodi returned to our prison. He had been put to dreadful torture.

He had black marks on his face and he had a bruised eye. As soon as he entered the yard, walking carefully, he greeted us with his fist and with the words "The people will win!"

We took him into our cell and he lay down. He was critically ill. Our orderly looked after him. The doctor came to see him. He was in a critical condition and so we asked the doctor to take him to the hospital. He agreed but he needed the approval of the warden and the director of the prison.

We sent a request to the warden to send the sick man to the hospital. After two days he came to the prison personally. We told him that he would be guilty and responsible if he left the ill man to die in prison.

Toward evening they gave an order to take Metodi to the hospital. Four comrades and one strong man lifted him and took him to the hospital. The doctor foresaw that Metodi would not live for many days. He was looked after by an excellent nurse, and he was guarded by two angry policemen.

With careful attention Metodi straightened up a little and got up one day for a walk. The police were not there at that time. He went into the corridor and walked away from the ward.

When the police returned and they did not see him, they were furious. As soon as they found him, they began to beat him with their belts.

"Bulgar! You are trying to escape…?"

Metodi did not make any reply. He went quietly back to the ward. When they got there, the police began to beat him again - with fists and kicks, with their belts.

"Bulgar, we will kill you here. A court is not needed for you."

Metodi fell on the floor. When the nurse entered one of the police jumped on him. Metodi was groaning.

At midnight Metodi closed his eyes. They found him clenching both his fists. With one fist he greeted his comrades while with the other fist he showed his hate for fascism.

A Hadzhitashkov


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

© 2009

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For Sacred National Freedom: Portraits Of Fallen Freedom Fighters