Photographer's Note

...On December 6th 1943 the German armies came to Kalavryta. At first they reassured the frightened inhabitants about their intentions only demanding from them to hand in their guns and setting a airfew. They also forbade any departures from the town. Then, they burned down the houses of those who had taken part in the national resistance.

On December 13th, at dawn, the bells started to toll. An order was given to the terrified people to gather at the schoolyard carrying a blanket and food for one day. They locked the women and children and the elderly citizens in the school, taking the young and the men to the place of execution, a field outside the town. They reassured them that they wouldn't hurt anyone but, at the same time, smoke started to come out of the houses of Kalavryta. In a few minutes the whole town was on fire. The men, who knew now that they were going to die, first witnessed the destruction of their homes and went through the agony for the future of their families in the school.

The agony and emotional torture lasted for 3 hours! At half past 12, two flares were shot in the sky from the town center. That was the signal. Then Tener, the head executioner, gives the order, and the machine-guns which were placed before the people start to breathe fire and death. More than 1000 men from 12 to 50 years old, priests, teachers, judges, civil servants, tradesmen, clerks, farmers and other simple people fall on the field of Kapis, bleeding, one on top or next to the other. The German soldiers walk among them and finish off the ones still alive. Out of 1,000 only 13 lived, wounded, and related in detail this big catastrophe which left its marks upon the town of Kalavryta on the ill-omended day of December 13th 1943. And all this happened as reprisals for the murder of some German soldiers, killed by the national resistance forces.......

This shot is taken on very cold day from the top of the hill looking down to the place of execution and the village of Kalavrita.

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Additional Photos by Dimitris Kakaletris (Dimis) Silver Star Critiquer/Silver Note Writer [C: 18 W: 0 N: 17] (209)
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