Village of Ležáky


Ležáky was a village near Chrudim, which was burnt down on 24 June 1942 and its inhabitants were murdered by Nazis, because of „heydrichiáda“. It was fourteen days after the extermination of Lidice. It was a revenge, because in Ležáky there was a hidden transmitter Libuše of parachutist groups Silver A, which was in the county to assassinate the imperial protector Reinhard Heydrich.

There were eight houses gathered around a mill by the river Ležák. Ležáky wasn’t renewed after the war, but there was a memorial arisen, which forms a marked ground-plans of original buildings and a sacred place. Since 1 June 2008 it has been managed by Monument Lidice.

Since 1941 skydiving groups were planted in the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia, which were tasked to contact the resistance, to improve connections with a government in exile in Britain and to lead diverse actions against the German occupiers. On 27 May 1942 paratroopers performed the assassination of Reinhard Heydrich. Then there were huge repressions against Czech population. On 10 June Lidice in Kladno was demonstratively destroyed, although inhabitants didn’t have anything to do with the assassination. A parachutist Karel Čurda, separated from the others, on 16 June volunteered at the Prague Gestapo. He gave testimony about a resistance network in the Pardubice region. On 20 June the first member - an administrator of the quarry Hluboká was arrested in an immediate vicinity Ležáky and on 21 June the lager miller Švanda was arrested too. They were interrogated and tortured.

On 24 June 150 men of Pardubice troop surrounded Ležáky early afternoon. It was the 20. reserve police regiment Böhmen, which was led by the Gestapo. The Germans gathered people from Ležáky and the neighbourhood, where they stayed, and took them to Pardubice villa Zámeček.

Houses were looted and burnt down at about five o'clock. All 33 people older than 15 years were shot dead after nine o'clock in the evening near the Zámeček. The children were transported from Pardubice to the children's home in the evening in Prague and the beginning of July to a camp in Poland Lodži, where they were sorted. Two children were chosen as suitable for germanization and the remaining eleven children were forwarded to the Gestapo on 25 July, then apparently killed in a gas chamber in Chelmno.

On 26 June a report of an extermination Ležáky was published. In autumn 1943, the ruins of buildings were knocked down.

- by Lena Z.