In December 1989, Romanians stood up against the regime that had been suppressing them for decades. Unlike other countries in Eastern Europe, the Romanian revolution was a bloody one. Hundreds of people were gunned down in the streets of Bucharest - many of them teenagers. When I visited Bucharest in January 1990, there was a makeshift cemetery with wooden crosses and handwritten notes. It left a lasting impression on me. Now, twenty years later, it was time to visit the official Cemetery of the Heroes of the Revolution, or the Cimitirul Eroii Revolutiei.
When I visited Bucharest this time, the signs of a thick layer of snow were visible everywhere. On the pavement, heaps of snow were slowly melting, and it was sometimes difficult to walk. The sun was starting to shine on snowy Bucharest, and when I walked through Carol I Park which contains the grave of the unknown soldier at the feet of an immense monument. From here, it was a short walk to the cemetery, which was easily recognizable by the orthodox church next to it. After entering the cemetery, the noise of the street running next to the cemetery died down a little bit.
A thick layer of snow was still covering the 281 tombs. I immediately noticed that all tombstones were identical: marble slabs, a cross on the side, flowers, a flag with the Romanian colours, a small candle next to the tombstone. Upon closer inspection, they gained individuality. A name, a small black and white picture. Elsewhere in the cemetery, I came across a wall with plaques with names of all the revolutionary heroes. After walking around the small, serene cemetery, I walked into the Church of the Martyr Heroes. A typical orthodox church, this church was specifically built for the cemetery and its heroes. Inside, a coffin with a dedication to those killed during the 1989 events. Here, people come to pray for those outside, to find peace with history, to keep the memory of those unfortunate teenagers and older victims of the brutal events alive.
Personal travel impressions both in words and images from Cemetery of Heroes of Revolution (Romania). Clicking on the pictures enlarges them and enables you to send the picture as a free e-card or download it for personal use, for instance, on your weblog. Or click on the map above to visit more places close to Cemetery of Heroes of Revolution.
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