Marie Boudakian

I was born during the first major massacres, the Adana massacres of 1909.


In 1915, I remember the Turkish police entering our house and searching for revolutionary books because they suspected my father of being a revolutionary. They

found no books, but took my father anyway. The rest of our family was deported. First stop was Kemereg where all the males were separated from the caravan and lead away. I heard the sound of gunfire from the distance.


I also vividly remember an incident as our caravan walked through tall wheat fields. Somebody screamed “get down” as marauding Kurds attacked us: my mother and I ducked under the wheat and barely escaped being killed or abducted.


Fearing for our safety, my mother gave me and my sister, Sima, up to a Circassian family. During the next four years, my sister and I lived in a Circassian village. We attempted to escape several times, but were never successful. One day, with no warning, my sister disappeared. There was nothing I could do, no way of looking for her. I never heard from my sister again and I never found out what happened to her.