Arkady Isaakovich Dayel was born on July 27, 1926 in shtetl Volochisk, in Khmelnitska Oblast, Ukraine. Before the war, Dayel finished 7 grades of Yiddish school. After war broke out, his family evacuated to Uzbekistan. Dayel’s father was mobilized into the working army and his mother died in evacuation in 1942. Drafted in 1943, Dayel was deployed to the front in 1944 as a machine-gunner. He participated in battles in Belarus and in the 1st Baltics Front. Shell-shocked, he was hospitalized in Panevėžys, Lithuania. Awarded two Orders of the Red Star, Dayel was sent to a military academy in April 1945. Dayel continued his military service in Sakhalin, Kamchatka and Ukraine. In 1990 he emigrated to Israel. Interview was recorded in Or Akiva, in 2008.
My parents understood the need to evacuate.
A journey to the front: a train to a ruined station, then by foot.
17,000 Jews near Panevezy: something hardened in my soul.
Arduous training in Central Asia: 32 kg soldier's kit.
From first combat to first combat award.
Only one trench coat.