7.  Evacuation to Persia

by Danuta Mączka Gradosielska

We left Guzar by passenger train, which was a real luxury after the cattle-trucks.

We arrived in Krasnovodsk on 27 March, ate lunch and then waited for the ship. During the night we boarded the cargo boat overloaded with 5,000 soldiers!! On the next vessel were families, among them Mother, Father and Tadeusz.   A lot of people on the boat were ill and there were even a few deaths - mainly caused by serious illnesses like typhoid and dysentery. One main trouble was a lack of water - but far greater was the lack of toilets - this caused long queues and many people simply relieved themselves over the side. I felt desperately sorry for those who died on the very threshold of freedom. 




Danuta's "Ankieta" so-called Hoover statement, written on arrival in Persia while details were still fresh in her mind.

Danuta's Diary + route map
1.Life in
Deportation to Siberia
Life in Siberia
The "Amnesty" 
6. Joining the
 Army in southern Russia
 The Italian Campaign

10.  Post-war life   

      Debarking in Pahlevi 1942

We arrived in the port of Pahlevi in Persia (now Bandar Anzali, Iran) on 30th March and disembarked in the afternoon. We were directed to tents pitched on the beach. It was so nice and warm on the sand. Persian men came around, selling boiled eggs, figs and dates. We were advised against buying anything because our shrivelled stomachs needed time to get used to richer food. 

We were sent to the baths, leaving our possessions behind in the tents but I had taken with me a small case with documents, photos, my diary and such. After disinfecting and washing, we were shown to new tents, as the previous tents, together with all our possessions, were being burnt!