Heartwarming effect of wartime letters exhibition in Vitebsk pointed out
The exhibition “Destinies folded in a triangle” presents touching and surprising stories from the frontline, BelTA Director General Irina Akulovich said during the opening ceremony.
Irina Akulovich said: “Created by BelTA in association with the Belarusian State Museum of History of the Great Patriotic War, the exhibition has gathered very touching stories. Stories from Vitebsk are among them. I reread these letters one more time on the way here. It seems to me that it would be magnificent if adults and children read these letters. Letters sent by the Grak brothers are among them. They offer a surprising story of residents of Vitebsk Oblast. There were six Grak brothers and one sister. Three of them died. There is also correspondence between Vitebsk Oblast residents – Vladimir Glebov and his girlfriend Yekaterina. She was a secretary of the Beshenkovichi District Committee of the Communist Party of Belarus during the war while he was a partisan. They looked forward to meeting each other but he died when his unit was surrounded in Ushachi District. Yekaterina kept the letters from her beloved for many years and handed them over to a museum after that.”
The triangular letters of Vitebsk Oblast residents also include letters sent by Junior Sergeant Gennady Filatenko to his mother. The woman admitted the letters had inspired her and had helped her live. Gennady Filatenko was a member of the 2nd Air Assault Division of the 1st Ukrainian Front. He lived to see the Victory and was awarded an Order of Glory 3rd Class, an Order of the Red Star, and a Medal of Valor.
Irina Akulovich noted: “Billions of letters were sent by frontline soldiers to the rear during the Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945. Since the supply of envelopes was depleted as early as summer 1941, soldiers started folding regular sheets of paper into triangles. Friends and families kept these letters as relics and looked forward to the next ones as a confirmation that their loved and dear people are alive.”
The exhibition is located in the Alley of Military Glory in Pobeditelei Park. It offers 18 stories about destinies of frontline soldiers as a collection of scanned letters sent by soldiers. Today Vitebsk residents and guests of the festival can send triangular letters to anyone. “I can say our postal service operates beautifully. I sent a letter from Mogilev to my uncle in Sergiyev Posad. We talked yesterday: the letter has already arrived in Moscow Oblast,” BelTA's director general noted.