A MEMORIAL to Jozef Gabčík, a Slovak soldier of the Czechoslovak exile army in World War II who was involved in the assassination of acting “Reichsprotektor of Bohemia and Moravia” (i.e. the regional governor named by Germany) Reinhard Heydrich in 1942, was unveiled in his native village of Poluvsie in northern Slovakia on October 11.
The placement of the memorial was initiated by people from Rajecké Teplice spa and Rajecka Dolina, in the Žilina region. Gabčík’s native village Poluvsie is now part of the spa town of Rajecké Teplice. The project was approved by the town council of Rajecké Teplice which also announced a public fundraising campaign to cover the cost of the memorial, which should reach €12,500. The fundraising campaign still continues.
The bust of the memorial was made by Peter Repka, a native of Poluvsie, and is facing Gabčík’s natal home.
“The bust will be looking at the site where Jozef Gabčík spent his childhood, on the courtyard where he used to play with his siblings and his mother,” sculptor Repka said. “And so, I conjured up a nice smile on his face.”
Three weeks after the lethal attack on Heydrich, Gabčík and his comrades committed suicide at an Orthodox church in Prague after their situation became hopeless in a shoot-out with German troops. The village of Gabčíkovo in the Trnava region and the adjacent waterworks on the Danube River, as well as Gabčík’s Fifth Special Task Force Regiment of the Slovak Armed Forces’ in Žilina are named after the man who tried, dispatched by the exile resistance movement in Great Britain together with his comrades-in-arms, to overturn the situation in the wartime “Protectorate Bohemia and Moravia” by killing the German-nominated puppet governor.
27. Oct 2014 at 0:00 | Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská