Fania Brantsovskaya and Mikhail Brantsovskiy

This is my husband Mikhail Brantsovskiy and I, photographed in July 1944 in the ghetto in Vilnius, there was a library in this yard, a sports ground and a prison. We have medals on our chests. In 1943, in the partisan unit, I met my true love. My future husband, Mikhail Brantsovkiy, came from Vilnius. He was born on 10th November 1921. Mikhail and I felt close to one another at once. We had a common fate: a happy cloudless childhood interrupted by the war and the ghetto. We were both worried about what happened to our dear ones kind of guessing their tragic end. We had very moving relationships in the partisan unit. When Misha and I started seeing one another, a friend of mine came to tell him not to hurt me. I was given a rifle and then an automatic gun. I dragged it with me and took part in military missions. Mikhail was at the head of a group. There were cooks and other logistics people in the unit to take care of the routines. We suffered from lack of vitamins. Once, a comrade of mine brought me half a lemon when he came back from a task. I thought that was very nice of him. Mikhail suffered from scurvy and wasn't involved in any missions. Somehow he managed to overcome his illness. I suffered from stomatitis. Our doctor prescribed me an injection of cow milk. They must have infected me with something. I got a huge abscess and fever, but somehow I managed to recover. On 22nd July 1944 we actually became husband and wife, we started living together, and we got married on 17th August that year. We had no passports. We had our marriage registered in our partisan ID's; the registry office that had just been opened made an entry about our marriage. The whole unit celebrated our wedding. All partisan groups stayed in cottages in Vilnius together. Our group got a big mansion on Anglu Street. Later we got a big apartment in Pilimo Street. My husband and I had a big room there. We slept on mattresses on the floor. We spent our evenings with the group and also shared the food with them. We were intoxicated by the victory, our youth and love.