Yehoshua Shklyar, Tel Aviv
English translation by
Maltsya Batelman

With pain and deep sorrow we remember Telechan.  The name that once evoked joyful and happy memories from our childhood makes us now bend our heads in deep mourning for the immeasurable loss we have suffered.

Our hearts are full with pain and anger as we think of what became of our dear little town, and our parents, brothers and sisters who were killed in such a brutal way.

There is no sign on their mass grave.  Even the old cemetery, the last resting -place of our earlier deceased Jews, has been transformed into a petroleum depot.  A rich, colorful, hardworking Jewish community has tragically perished, lost forever.

The Jewish Telechan had, like other Jewish communities, its own story.  After World War 1, the Jews returned to the town.  From the wrecked burned ruins, they began to rebuild their lives anew.  Cultural and social life began to flourish again.

Telechan had a Yiddish elementary school with the unforgettable dear Chaim Yeshayah Schneiderman teaching the higher grades, and with dearest teacher Hershel Rudkovitsky.  Although the school was not a Gymnasia (high school), it was nevertheless very good.  There was also a Polish school, a library with a reading hall, a loan society, and a Jewish bank for tradesmen and merchants.

Thus the Jews of Telechan lived and worked.  Though they were not the majority of the town’s dwellers, the Jews had a great impact on the whole town and its environs.

There was the Oghinsky canal with its beautiful tree lined walks, the little avenue, crowded with young people at leisure time.  A hundred yards further was the ancient stone wall with its gruesome stories and legends…

All this was cut short forever.  The Jewish Telechan is no more.  With indescribable pain we remember our dear martyrs, who were led to their death like a helpless herd of sheep.  We, the survivors of the obliterated Jewish community, have engraved our martyrs in our hearts never to forget them.

With our “Memorial Book” we immortalize the rich cultural life and tragic death of the Telechan Jewish community.  May this “Book” be the tombstone on the unmarked mass graves of our dear people from Telechan

[1] Excerpt from Telechan Memorial Book