NEW YORK (Aug. 23)
The National Conference on Soviet Jewry reported today that the family of the late Col. Yefim Davidovich has received an exit permit to emigrate to Israel. Eugene Gold, NCSJ chairman, said this move “represents the culmination of a long struggle, though tragically Colonial Davidovich never lived to see his name on an exit visa.” He died of a heart attack on April 24, at his home in Minsk.
Before he died, Gold recalled, Davidovich said, “My life experience brought me to the conclusion that my family and I can live a life worthy of a human being and a citizen only in the Jewish National State….I would not deny the truth, deny my words even if I had to suffer everything from the beginning.” Davidovich wrote in one of his numerous appeals to Soviet authorities that “during one of the KGB interrogations or after it I shall die….Willingly or unwillingly I shall become a martyr, a victim of anti-Semitism.”
Sixteen months later the former Soviet war here died, still hounded by the KGB. Buried in Minsk in full military uniform, more than 1000 persons attended the funeral. In a letter to the West, Davidovich’s widow, Maria, wrote: “Thank you for your consolations in my time of sorrow I agree to have Davidovich’s remains transferred to Israel for burial. Alive or dead he belongs to his people….”