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An Armenian's Escape from the Turks

Nazar Melkonian, Armenian Survivor

Armenian. They pick Armenian, nobody but Armenian. But so the guy, the people that pick us, they all got guns on their shoulder, you know. So they got us, they take us over to the big field, way far from our village. They start shooting, you know, they kill. I've seen hundreds of men, dead people.

They drag -- they don't even touch anymore. It's summertime; it smells, you know. With the hook -- they make wooden hook, they gave some young people, you know. They hook it up by their clothes or by neck and drag. They have a big ditch dug there already, big ditches out there. So they bring that and drop them over there, hundreds of them; you know, it's not only few, it's hundreds of them. So after they got that filled up they got another one already, hundreds of them. So that goes on and on, you know.

Finally I got back to the place where one night my mama said, "You know what, we are going to go -- we going to escape from here." She said, "I know somebody; he was friend of your father." My father (inaudible) years back, he had a little bit of a store -- they sell dried goods, you know; she was selling dried goods.

Anyway, so at night we escaped. At night we went, knock on the door of the people that -- they wake up and they says, "Oh, is this Anna?" Yes. So they took us in that night. A couple of days, again they pick it. They took my sister.