Galina Shkolnikova and her mother Sofia Yezerskaya

This is me and my mother, Sofia Yezerskaya, in evacuation in Alma-Ata in 1943. I don?t have any special reminiscences about that day; I only remember that we went to this photo-studio. The hat I?m wearing kind of grew up with me: I wore it from my birth up to the 1st grade at school. During the first days of the war my father went to sign up for the People's Volunteer Corps, as he was not subject to the draft, but mother, being a doctor, was already transferred to the state of barracks. She insisted that he stay with my grandmother and me. He continued to work in GIPH, but was soon also enlisted to the state of barracks. I stayed at home with my grandmother. In August 1941 my mother made an effort to send us into evacuation, but the Germans had bombed a train with evacuated people near Mga, Leningrad region, so she decided against the idea. Thus we all found ourselves in the siege. My mother periodically visited us. In October and November 1941 a boarding school for employees' children was arranged at my mothers' hospital, which was by that time re-organized into an evacuation hospital, and my grandmother was left alone. The three of us were evacuated in July 1942 across Ladoga Lake and found ourselves in Alma-Ata [the capital of Kazakhstan], where my mother worked as a doctor at the children's hospital. My father worked as an engineer at the Chemical and Metallurgical Institute. He was preparing for the defense of his doctoral thesis, but in January 1944 he was drafted to the army. Father was at the Leningrad frontline. He was an artillery-man, an ammunition carrier. In one of the battles a shell hit the ground and everybody, except for my father, perished.