By Wilmer A. Harms M.D.
Hearth Publishing, Hillsboro, Kansas, 1998, 203 pages, softcover.
Each generation shares the continuing mural of humanity. One does not end and another begat, bat etch without pause blends into the next, affecting forever the lives of those who follow.
Our lives, too, have been influenced to greater and lesser degrees by many of the individuals whose stories are chronicled in this book. Their part was to live true to their beliefs and for some, to die because of them. Our part is to read, to reflect and to remember them. And in remembering, to be changed for the better.
Dr. Harms has detailed the roots of Russian-German migration through China to the Americas. By first supplying an historical setting, he allows us to see this saga through the eyes of the refugees themselves. These stories, some painful and unsettling, yet nonetheless inspiring and uplifting, are the result of years of diligent research, as well as personal interviews.
While we cannot help but be moved by the accounts recorded in The Odyssey. . . and The saga. . ., we can also be comforted and assured in this —
Wilmer A. Harms has done us a great service by writing this unique and valuable detailing the hardships and many escapes from Russia. While a number of books have been written of this history, Harms brings together the many facets needed to understand a story that is history, drama, tragedy and triumph. It speaks of upheavals and resettlement on several continents, all with a thread of faith running through the narrative,
For years the world was unaware of the fate of the Germans in Russia under Stalin, but with the collapse of Communism that story is unfolding. In this book Dr. Harms provides a most interesting account of the hardships and persecution of the Germans in Russia which ultimately drove many of them to undertake dangerous, daring, almost impossible attempts to escape Russia by way of Harbin, China. Dr. Harms describes the escape routes and recounts the stories of numerous successful escapes. These stories are interesting because no two are alike. However, the story of Anna K. will keep the reader spellbound,
About the Author
Dr. Wilmer A. Harms attended Tabor College and is a graduate of Kansas University School of Medicine. He spent nearly 40 years in the Practice of Medicine, first in General Practice at Hesston, KS, then as a specialist in Ophthalmology at the Hertzler Clinic in Halstead, KS. He has always enjoyed expressing himself by writing but readily admits his style is not that of a scholar. In writing about the Germans who escaped out of Russia he has been able to capture their emotions in a way which will make reading this story an experience that will touch the heart of the reader.
The Odyssey of Escapes from Russia: A Saga of Anna K
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