Friday, 15 May 2009

Constant heart: the story of my great grandparents, Alexandra and Timofei

Today I will tell you the story of Alexandra and Timofei, my great grandparents. For the LO I have chosen an old wedding photo (a photocopy) taken in Kursk, Russia in 1917. The red angel is taken from Marc Chagall's "Wedding", one of my most favourite paintings.
Red crowns are references to the Russian church wedding ceremony, when crowns are held above the heads of the wedded couple.
There is a pocket behind the panel with the photo, and it reads like this:
"Kursk, 1917. They called each other Shurochka and Timosha. Soon the Revolution will shatter their fragile world, and the lightening of the Red Terror will devastate millions of lives. They were in love, and they married. During the terrible waves of repressions and executions of 1937 Timofei was arrested and taken away in the black car. He was forced out of the car and shot dead for being rude to the KGB officer. Nobody bothered to tell Alexandra. She thought he was exiled to GULAG.
As many GULAG convicts had no right of correspondence, the absence of letters meant nothing. And there was always hope that one day your true love would be back... You counted days, years and hoped... You never gave up, a constant heart.
When Stalin died in 1953, and those who survived the camps returned home, Timofei's friends told Alexandra about his death.
Can you imagine waiting for more than 16 years to find out that your husband has been dead all this time?!
She never remarried."

Materials used: Stampington newsletter lace download on Basic Grey Boxer paper, antique ribbon, an old pearly buckle (got it for 5p at a charity shop!) and other bits and bobs.


Carrie said...

:( Very sad story Galina and beautifully captured.

joanne wardle said...

oh, what a sad story. but a beautiful layout

alcoholinky said...

what an amaazing story Galina and what a poingnant layout.

Chris said...

I had goosebumps reading this, Galina. What a tragic story. It's a beautiful layout.

Seona said...

What an emotive story Galina, so sad and yet so full of love!

Karin said...

What a tragic story, Galina. You've captured it beautifully.

Audrey said...

oh Galina - that is the most amazing, beautiful sad story. Thank you so much for sharing it.

Kaz said...

this is so sad, what a real shame. gorgeous LO though. x

Jo Capper-Sandon said...

A wonderful tribute to your Great Grandparents Galina.
I'm always totally drawn in to your tales of your familiy and experiences in Russia. I find them so full of passion.
No wonder you're such a strong woman with genes that dealt with such atrocities as this.

Lesley said...

Thank you for sharing that story with us Galina. Your LO is very special and a testomony to the love of your great grandparents.
Lesley x

Linda said...

Fabulous LO Galina, now the story of your ggrandparents can be kept alive.

LOve the LO of Sasha at the aquarium too - very evocative.

Zoechaos said...

such a sad story we celtic anglo saxons forget just how terrible things have been in other parts of the world. Your LO is very moving and captures the whole thing perfectly.

Anonymous said...

What a tragic story Gelina.I guess they had a child also if they were you great grandparends,so one of your grandparents had to grow up without a father.Sadness through generations.You made a beautiful LO.
War only destroys,there are never winners.