Remembering the Horrific Events of May 6, 1945

On May 6, 1945, many residents of the village saw the arrival of a German truck that turned to Bezděkov in the forest called Hurt. After some time, two massed and over twenty lonely shots came out and the car left the place to Německý Brod. Not everyone paid attention. They thought the Germans were shooting wildlife. A day later, at noon, however, Jaroslav Bárta found two shallow graves and seven bodies in them at the edge of Hurt’s Grove. The bodies were picked up by people and transferred deeper into the forest, where the enclosure was rebuilt, and then to the morgue in the village of Skála. After the examination, the doctor stated that they were brutally beaten and shot. Before their death, they had to dig their graves (shovels or their own hands) into which they were thrown and covered by the Germans. Identification of bodies showed that they were Czechs from Německý Brod and Chotěboř imprisoned at the grammar school in Brod.

The Germans started to worry about this. Generally, it was known that the prisoners of the 5th May had members of the SS in the school building and had not been informed about them ever since. Only on the 12th of May, another two fresh graves were found behind the premises of the Provincial Institute for the Insane (at the end of the war transformed into an SS hospital) in the so-called Láznička’s hillside. Thirteen German officers were involved in the digging, serving as witnesses to the event. The bodies were transferred to the institute’s mortuary where they were stripped and washed away from the dirt. On 14 May the doctor examined the dead one at a time and only knew the causes of death from the external signs. The people were tortured (crushed bones on the hands and face) and shot, many also mutilated unrecognizable. It was not only Brod’s citizens, but only three out of eight were from Brod. Most came from nearby villages (Kojetín, Lučice and Lipnice) and one even from Frýdek-Místek.

The question still remains, what has led the Germans to such a horrible act. It could be a revenge, but also a culmination of the nervousness of the last days of the war. Nobody also knows what really happened in the gymnasium building during interrogation and torture. What is certain, however, is that this crime has become one of the grounds for the indictment of Nazism in the Nuremberg trial in 1945-1946.