1 Execution site(s)
Eriks G., born in 1944 : "I remember one day, when I was grazing my animals, I accidentally came across a mass grave. There were loads of human bones there. On my way home, my parents told me that it was the site of a Jewish shooting. Since most of the Jews were shopkeepers and merchants in the village, they were well known to the local people. In fact, my mother knew some of the victims." (Witness n°46LV, interviewed in Pumpuri, on October 2, 2019
Skrunda is a town located 150 km (95 miles) west of Riga, in the Kurzeme region of Latvia. In 1935, 45 Jews were registered in the town, about a dozen families. They represented between 1 and 3% of the local population. They were mainly shopkeepers and traders of agricultural products. Their relations with the other inhabitants were good and some mixed marriages took place. In the summer of 1940, under the terms of the German-Soviet pact, the region was annexed by the USSR.
On June 22, 1941, the German armies and their allies began their invasion of the USSR. On June 25, Skrunda was occupied. On August 7, 1941, about 50 Jews from the town and surrounding villages were taken to a forest 5 km (3 miles) southeast of Skrunda, near the village of Pumpuri. There, they were all shot in a mass grave near the Sumata River. Skrunda was liberated by the Red Army in May 1945.
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