Irina Tsvey

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This is my, Alexander Tsvey’s, daughter Irina Tsvey. She is being an anchorwoman of the TV program  "Let's go, girls!". Moscow, 1985.

I met my wife-to-be Inga Kisina during my studies at the institute. Inga and I got married in December 1951. We got registered in the marriage registration office and in the evening we had a wedding party for our kin and friends. Mother and I had a room in a communal apartment, and wife's family also lived in communal apartment in the center of Moscow, in 3 poky rooms. My wife and I moved in one of them after wedding. Later on, when we had two children, we still lived in that room. Soon doctors found out that Inga had a diabetes. She was a very good person, beautiful, smart and intellectual. She was a giver rather than taker. She has worked for scientific and research institute all her life, but still she found time to take care of children. As for material side, life was hard on us. We constantly had debts and could not only afford luxury, we could not even afford to go on vacation to the suburb of Moscow. Children often went to pioneer camps. My wife and I were atheists and raised our children soviet. We even bid not break the subject of religion in our family. We gladly marked soviet holidays - 1st of May, 7th of November [October Revolution Day], Soviet Army Day, Victory Day. We invited our friends to come and share potluck with us no matter that we could not afford a feast.

Our elder son Yuri Tsvey, named after my father, was born in 1954, and my daughter Irina was born in 1959. On her birthday, the 15th of December was the all-union census. I had to spend a night at my mother's place, as when people came to put my data, I was supposed to stay at the place, for which I had a residence permit, and I had it for my mother's apartment to take over the room in the event she died. Early in the morning my neighbor gave me a call and said that my daughter was born. I rushed to the delivery house and saw TV cameras and crowds of people. Then I got a note from my wife saying: 'TV came over from the Program 'Daily News' and had been teasing Irishka (we knew how we would name the daughter before she was born) and I for 2 hours. But at last they changed linen, put flowers and said that the video would be shown on TV. Of course, we turned TV on when it was evening news was broadcast. First it was informed that all-union census commenced on that day. Then we saw the ward of the delivery house.  Inga was in bed and there was a tiny moppet by her, my daughter Irina. The announcer said: "Inga Tsvey is giving information on her newly born daughter in the delivery house '. 'Daily News' was broadcast throughout USSR. We received telephone calls with congratulations from every corner, where our kin and friends lived.

Son and daughter followed into parents' footsteps. Both of them graduated from Moscow Engineering and Construction institute. Son did well as he was capable. Upon graduation he worked as a designer/engineer for some period of time. Then computers appeared and he was keen on programming. He became a brilliant programmer. Then he went to work in commerce. Now he is a realtor. Son is rather well-off, but he does not enjoy his work that much.

Irina is joking that she has been on camera since the first day of her life. After graduation from the institute daughter was involved in work on TV. She was the anchorwoman of one of the popular TV amusement programs. Now Irina is working on the radio as deputy chief editor of radio station Moscow Echo. Irina is married, but she preserved her maiden name Tsvey. She knew it would make me happy. Many people at work advised her to change her name, but daughter said that she did not want to disgrace her father, whose Jewish name did not bother him when he was fighting in the lines. 

Interview details

Interviewee: Alexander Tsvey
Svetlana Bogdanova
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Moscow, Russia


Irina Tsvey
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after WW II:
Deputy chief editor of radio station

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