A Lithuanian American survivor of two World Wars tells her life story, from her earliest memories, to her life at 80 years of age in Cape Cod, Massachusetts. With surprising recall of details she tells of struggles, heartache, and life in Raseiniai, Lithuania during WWI and WWII, and her family's emigration to the United States. The Zikaite and Mickunas families' humble lives face repeated interruption and turmoil as the Russian and German forces battle over territory in Lithuania. Family members separate, some fleeing to labor camps and refugee camps, while others join military or resistance forces. In eloquent language translated from her handwritten Lithuanian memoir, Adele shares happy memories and anecdotes, along with tales of loss, separation, and reunion common to immigrant families. Mickunas describes her time spent in rural Lithuania, Vilnius, Moscow Russia, Oldenberg Germany, and eventual moves to Boston and Cape Cod Massachusetts. The humble heroine remembers her early independence and determination to study and teach, and her bravery through trauma, uncertainty, and a treacherous sea voyage while immigrating to the U.S. with her young sons. Her diary ends with descriptions of Eastern European immigrant life in New England, as the family members find jobs, work to sponsor fellow Lithuanians to emigrate, and the children grow and start their own families in America. This tear-jerking autobiography provides a people's history of Lithuanian farmers caught in the middle of the Russian and German power struggle. It presents a tale of hope and survival, inspiring readers to persevere and appreciate life and family.
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