This is very similar to (please see Note 1 below!) what the conditions on our ship – the coastal scooner P/L ELLI, with which some 190 people, including our family of eight - were like, when we escaped from Saaremaa, Estonia to Sweden seventy years ago, in September, 1944, ahead of the oncoming Soviet-Russian occupation of our birth-homeland. Elli left the Kdema Bay around midnight on September 22 - and arrived in Far, Sweden in the early morning hours two days later, on September 24. For the final fifty or so nautical miles, we were escorted by a friendly Swedish Naval ship, which spotted us in their coastal area; at that point, we were in the midst of a strong Baltic Sea autumn storm, which almost sank our ship.


Below is a copy of a recent Swedish Radio article about people like us – as we arfrived in Sweden 70 years ago.


"70 r har gtt sedan den 21 september 1944 d sovjetiska trupper intog Estlands huvudstad Tallinn. Och medan jrnridn delade Europa mitt itu kade flyktingstrmmen ver stersjn till Sverige. Hr samlades tiotusentals balter i flyktinglger fr att s smningom smlta in i det svenska samhllet. Till dem hrde frilansjournalisten Dodo Parikas estniska familj som hyrde rum i en dragig och sliten Saltsjbadsvilla fylld med estniska flyktingar."





Copied for own and friends information and use from the "ESTONIAN WORLD REVIEW"



The original article - with some additional background details - can be found from the Swedish website of:



Note 1: Even though the ship in photo on page 1 above looks very similar to our Elli (at least as I remember it!), it may well be a photo of a similar ship that sailed from some other Estonian or Latvian harbor at the time. In September 1944, there were a number of such coastal vessels - and various smaller boats - that were used by desperate people leaving their homeland behind in hope to safely reach Sweden - as far away as possible from the rapidly approaching Red Army and the Soviet-Russian occupation of their homeland that was following the army!!!


Toronto, Ontarkio, Canada

September 21, 2014


John (Johannes) Pahapil