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Stevo Jugovic

Pucari, Yugoslavia

Stevo, who was Serbian Orthodox, was a blacksmith, gunsmith and farmer in the village of Pucari. When he was 20, he went to live in the United States in Minnesota for four years. In 1912 he returned to Pucari, but when his wife and two of his sons died from influenza, he left again for America. In 1923 he returned to Pucari, where he remarried and raised four more children.

1933-39: Stevo had saved some money in the United States, and became one of the wealthiest farmers in his village. He acquired livestock and enlarged his farm. In addition to supporting his large family, he also supported his deaf-mute older brother. When war broke out in September 1939, Yugoslavia declared itself neutral.

1940-42: The Germans invaded Yugoslavia in April 1941. Croatian fascists [Ustase] came to power soon after in Croatia and Bosnia, and carried out pogroms against the Serbs. In July 1942 the Germans and Croatians launched a joint offensive against the partisans, who were based on Mount Kozara near Pucari. During the offensive, Stevo's family was imprisoned in a Croatian concentration camp at Cerovljani. Stevo was among the many men who were then deported to the German-run Sajmiste camp in Zemun.

Stevo, two of his brothers and a son were among 47,000 who perished in the Sajmiste extermination camp.

 

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