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The slaughter of the Jews of Daugėliškis

Daugėliškis-Google-Maps
Daugėliškis-Google-Maps

The testimony of Dvoyre Kuritzky, born April 6, 1911 in New Daugėliškis. From 1934 until 1939 she lived in Tel-Aviv, in the Land of Israel. That year Dvoyre came home for a visit, and she could not return because of the outbreak of the war between Nazi Germany and Poland. She continued to live in town the entire time. Dvoyre graduated from the Yiddish elementary school in New Daugėliškis. Her father’s name was Leybe, and her mother’s name was Reyzl, born Svirsky.

Geographic, Economic and Cultural Situation

Daugėliškis is located 25 kilometers north of Švenčionys, on the highway between Dvinsk and Švenčionys, eighteen kilometers from the Lithuanian town of Dūkštas and ten kilometers from Ignalina. The town is divided into two parts: New Daugėliškis and, three kilometers away, Old Daugėliškis. When the war broke out on June 22, 1941 about 280 Jews lived in New Daugėliškis, and about fifty Jews lived in Old Daugėliškis.

The Jews of Old Daugėliškis were employed in agriculture. The majority of the Jews in New Daugėliškis worked in trade and artisanry. The economic situation in the town was not bad.

Before Poland collapsed in 1939, the town belonged to Poland. After the collapse the town was assigned to Lithuania. The surrounding villagers, as well as the townspeople, were all Lithuanians. The attitude of the Lithuanians in town toward the Jews before the war broke out in 1941 was not bad.

New Daugėliškis had a community bank, an elementary school with instruction in Yiddish, a Hebrew-Yiddish library, one study house in New Daugėliškis and another in Old Daugėliškis.

The War Breaks Out, Ten Innocent Jews Killed

The majority of the young Jews belonged to Zionist movements. After the war broke out on June 22, 1941, only eight young people in town escaped together with the Soviet officials. These were young people who had been involved in politics under the Soviets, or who had occupied responsible positions. The great majority of the Jews did not even leave town for the countryside. The Germans entered the town on Wednesday, July 2, 1941. Beginning several days before the Germans arrived, armed Lithuanian bandits who called themselves partisans began running the town.

That same Wednesday, July 2, Germans ordered all the Jews, including the elderly and the sick, to gather at the square near the town hall. There all the Jews were lined up in rows and counted. There were a total of about 270 Jews in town at that time. They allowed the elderly and the sick to go home. The rest of the able-bodied men and women were immediately sent to do various tasks. After work everyone was allowed to go home. From that day on all of the able-bodied men and women had to report to the square near the town hall every morning. From there they were sent to do various tasks, such as pulling out the grass growing between the cobblestones in the town streets, washing the floors in the buildings used by, the Germans and partisans, and chopping wood. A group of men worked repairing the cemetery where German soldiers who had died during the First World War were buried.

The Germans spent a short amount of time in the town, and then proceeded further toward the front. All of the power in town fell into the hands of the partisans and police, who began their work of annihilating the Jews in town. The new mayor in town was the farmer Shtzeponis from the village of Micnalowa, three kilometers from town.

The chief of the partisans was Laurentzukas from the village of Laurentzukas, three kilometers from town. The intellectual leader of the partisans was the student technician Blaskauskas. The new police chief was a Lithuanian who had come from the town of Utenas named Griblauskas. Immediately after the civilian administration of the town was set up, the Lithuanians issued all of the familiar anti-Jewish decrees. Partisans and Germans went to all the Jewish houses, robbing them of whatever they chose to take. The partisan Druteikas, a farmer from the village of Dibarishkis, one kilometer from town, displayed exceptional brutality in the course of these robberies. The murderer broke the finger of a woman named Hese Kuritzky in the process of stealing her gold ring. That day he beat many Jews while he was robbing them. On the evening of Monday, July 14 partisans and police in town arrested ten men whose names were on a list of people whose children had escaped to the Soviet Union or who were suspected of having Communist sympathies. That same evening the ten Jews were driven through the town, carrying spades and under heavy guard, in the direction of Ignalina. Three kilometers from town they were forced to dig a pit, and there they were shot.

The next day, July 15, the partisan Druteikas personally told Dvoyre’s brother Moyshe that the ten men who had been taken out had been shot. That same day a peasant came from the village of Maksimanei and said that the ten Jews had been shot, and that the feet of the corpses were sticking out of the grave. Malke Abelevitz, Yokhl Lifshiftz and several other women whose husbands were among the ten murdered men went to the mass grave and personally saw everything. They tried to exhume the corpses and bury them at the Jewish cemetery. The police did not permit this.

The ten Jews who were murdered were:

  1. Fayve, a smith, aged 48.
  2. Yosl Abelevitz, Fayve’s brother-in-law, along with Yosl’s son Yankl and Yosl’s brother-in-law Leybe.
  3. Zalmen Tzinman, a tailor.
  4. Alter Berman, a tailor.
  5. Shoyel Ushpol, a merchant.
  6. Moyshe Fridman, a merchant from Kaltinenai.
  7. Yankl Tzinman, a tailor.

The ten Jews were arrested and then taken to be shot by several dozen partisans and police. Dvoyre only remembers a few of the murderers:

  1. The chief of police in town.
  2. Druleika.
  3. Cicenas, from the village of Duborishkis, near town.
  4. Milashius.
  5. Laurentziukas, the chief of the partisans in town.
  6. Bartoshki, a Russian from the village of Porigi, five kilometers from town.
  7. Ponawa, two brothers from the village of Maksimantzi.
  8. The student technician Blaskauskas from the village of Azani, five kilometers from town.

Exactly one week later partisans shot the teacher Avrom Soloveytzik from Švenčionys. Along with several other Jews he had been working at the German cemetery. Day in, day out they beat him murderously. One time they took him away from work, lead him out of town into an orchard, shot him there and threw him into a pit. His wife and father-in-law buried him at the Jewish cemetery in Ignalina.

When the war broke out he had been afraid to stay in Švenčionys because he was a member of the Communist Youth, and he and his wife had fled to stay with his father-in-law in New Daugėliškis.

Establishment of the Ghetto Jewish Council; Robberies and Murders

As soon as the civilian administration was established in town, they appointed the Jew Yudl Aron as the chief of the Jews. Yudl served as intermediary between the Jews on one hand, and the police and partisans on the other. They used him as their vehicle to extort various “requisitions” which they would demand. He was responsible to see to it that the specified number of workers appeared at the specified time.

On Monday, September 8, 1941 at 5:00 a.m., Yudl went to the Jewish houses announcing that all of the Jews had two hours to get ready and to move into a ghetto in the poorest neighborhood at the edge of town. They were permitted to bring everything along except for their better furniture. They were forbidden to use horses to help carry their possessions. The partisan commander gave Yudl a list indicating which house every family was supposed to settle into.

It was a market day in town. The peasants watched curiously and happily as the Jews dragged their few possessions along. Those who didn’t manage to move everything in the course of two hours had to leave everything behind in their houses. On the evening of that same day, the Jewish residents of Old Daugėliškis arrived, riding their own horses and wagons and bringing their cattle and poultry.

The next day, Saturday, September 9, the police announced through Yudl that all the Jews had to bring their horses and cattle to the municipal building. They only permitted four cows to be left behind in the ghetto. The Jews were forbidden to leave the ghetto area. There was no fence around the ghetto, nor was it guarded.

After they had been in the ghetto for a week, partisans and police took away every kind of machine the Jews had. At the same time they ordered the Jews to hand over their money, gold, silver and other valuables. Yudl gathered everything together, made a list of who had given what, and brought everything to the police. The next day they surrounded the ghetto, searched all of the Jewish houses and checked to see whether everyone had surrendered all of their valuables. As they made the searches, they took everything they found useful.

The partisans also committed robberies on their own. Each one of them issued orders and robbed Jews. Thus they announced that Jews were not allowed to sleep on bedding, and they took everyone’s bedding.

Every morning the Jews in the ghetto had to gather near the police station, and from there they were taken to do various tasks. Wealthier peasants also had permission to take Jews to work in the country every morning. When they returned from the countryside in the evening, the Jews had to report to the police. At work they were guarded by partisans who tormented and beat the Jews. One time they harnessed a boy from Old Daugėliškis named Alter Kril to a wagon. Alter had to drag the wagon through the street, and the partisans struck him with whips like a horse. All day they tormented him this way. The peasants in town stood on the sides of the streets, enjoying the “interesting performance.” Alter was brought to the ghetto in the evening, barely alive. He lay sick in bed all week.

Terrible News About the Slaughter in Lithuanian Towns

Peasants in the villages and neighbors from town began telling the Jews terrible details about the slaughter of all the Jews in the Lithuanian towns, and began suggesting to the Jews that they “entrust” to the peasants their better possessions “until after the war.” The Jews sensed that a terrible storm was coming their way.

On Friday, September 25 all of the workers were detained until late in the evening. Early in the morning on the Saturday between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur the Jews noticed the ghetto had been surrounded by heavily armed partisans. About ten minutes later Yudl came to Dvoyre’s house weeping. He announced in the name of the partisans that all of the Jews had to prepare to move into the Gluboki ghetto. They were only allowed to bring along a small pack of food, enough to last three days. He also expressed the opinion that all of the Jews were going to be shot.

In ten minutes the Jews had to leave their homes and go outside into the streets by their houses. They were taken to the square near the police station in groups, and there everyone was forced to sit down. They threatened to shoot on the spot anyone who stood up. After they drove the Jews out of their houses, they nailed the doors and windows closed. In the square they grouped everyone according to family, thoroughly searched everyone and took away the last goods the Jews had managed to bring along.

They forced the Jews to go in the direction of Švenčionėliai, under a heavy guard of partisans who were on foot and riding horses. The elderly, weak and sick, along with the children, were taken in wagons. The Jews were taken to the Švenčionėliai compound late in the evening on the Sabbath between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, 1941. (Concerning the further fate of the Jews of Daugėliškis, see the report of Dr Taraseysky about the slaughter of the Jews. of Švenčionys – LK)

As the Jews were being driven from Daugėliškis, the partisans beat them murderously. A Jew named Aba-Zelik Aron was murderously beaten by a partisan for being unable to stand everything. Aba-Zelik was sixty years old at the time. Dvoyre managed to get a ride in a wagon.

Two Jews from New Daugėliškis named Moyshe Gordon and Avrom Ushpol went from the ghetto to work for Germans in the village of Schlesirischkis. They returned from work to town on Saturday, September 26. On the way they met peasant acquaintances who told them that all the Jews had been taken out of the ghetto. They both stayed outside of town and hid in a forest. Partisans arrested the two men, brought them to Daugėliškis and locked them in a cellar.

A peasant friend of theirs named Shtzepanis found out they had been arrested, and received permission from his partisan friends to bring them food. The peasant warned the two Jews of the mortal danger awaiting them, and told them to get ready to leave the cellar the next day. The next day the peasant got the partisan commander drunk, along with several of his comrades, all of whom had stayed in town. The rest of the partisans had taken the Jews to the military compound.

Shtzepanis and another peasant broke the cellar open and told the Jews to escape. The two Jews were afraid to leave the cellar. “When do you want to die? Today or tomorrow?” the peasant told the Jews, and this convinced them to leave the cellar. The peasant told them not to come hide at his house, because the partisans would accuse him of saving the Jews and would come to search his place.

But the Jews had no-one to hide them, and they went to his home nevertheless. The peasant told them whose home to go to. The two men went to the home of a peasant named Raginis, where they stayed for four weeks until they went to Vidz.

When the Vidz ghetto was set up, Avrom Ushfol went to a brother of his in Pastoviai, where he died with all of the Jews of Pastoviai on November 21, 1942.

Moyshe-Isser Gordon entered the Vidz ghetto and stayed there until the liquidation. He went to the Švenčionys ghetto together with the rest of the Jews in the Vidz ghetto. He rode in the train with the Jews going to the Kaunas ghetto. They stopped near Ponari, where everyone was driven out of the railroad cars and shot. Moyshe-Isser Gordon was among those who died there.

Dvoyre’s husband Tevye Solomyak spoke to Gordon before the Švenčionys ghetto was liquidated, and suggested that they escape together. Gordon was very attached to a girl, and got involved in a love affair with her. So he didn’t leave the ghetto, and he died together with his beloved. Tevye also says that despair reigned in the Švenčionys ghetto, and along with it came loose morals and drunkenness; people descended to the lowest level. Tevye said goodbye to Gordon, who said: “I know that if you leave the ghetto, you have a 90% chance to live. My chances of surviving here are small.” Nevertheless he did not leave the ghetto.

Dvoyre Manages to Escape. Her Heroic Struggle for Survival

When the Jews of Daugėliškis were brought close to the military compound, shots were heard and a huge bonfire was seen. The Jews were certain that everyone who had been brought there was being thrown into the fire and shot. Peasants who had brought the Jews from the surrounding villages rode past them. They reported that the Jews who had already been brought there had been settled in barracks. Dvoyre was certain, however, that everyone was being shot, and since she had nothing to lose, she made her way down from the wagon and began running away. At that very moment Mrs Rokhl-Beyle Geytzen and her daughter Rosa ran away from the cart. The partisans chased after them and returned the mother and daughter to the cart, with their rifles drawn and cocked. Dvoyre managed to run away, through valleys and pits and over hills. She found herself filled with superhuman strength. She kept running forward, not knowing where she was headed. The dark night protected her from harm. The flames of the bonfire could be seen for quite some distance, and constant shooting could be heard. Dvoyre ran for about ten kilometers, but she was still afraid she might be captured right away. She went into a forest, made her way into a patch of dense, swampy brush and prepared a hiding place for herself. Depressed and hopeless, she stayed in the dense forest all night. She lay there exhausted all day Sunday. Finally hunger made her alert. She felt in her pockets, but didn’t find a single crust of bread.

She gathered various berries that were ripe in the fall and thus managed to calm her hunger and thirst a little bit. Dvoyre was afraid to leave the forest. She would see peasant men and women walking along happy and satisfied, and she was afraid to approach them. Dvoyre began living like Tarzan, with one difference: Tarzan had to watch out for wild animals, and fight against them. Dvoyre had to hide from people, those who were of the same species as herself.

She also had a much harder time finding food than Tarzan or Robinson Crusoe. When she had been in the forests for a few weeks, she began eating various grasses and frozen mushrooms. In the forest she had to struggle mightily against the early cold weather, which were exceptionally stubborn and stormy that fall. As she lay among the bushes, Dvoyre very often heard peasants speaking about the Jews who had been slaughtered at the compound. They would mention the names of Jews who had been found with treasure on their corpses after they were shot, and which of the peasants had gotten rich that way.

She also saw them carrying packages of Jews’ possessions that had been bought at auction. When she heard all these conversations, Dvoyre was even more afraid of showing herself to people.

One evening Dvoyre couldn’t control herself, and she stopped a peasant and his wife. She doesn’t know how long she wept before them, pleading with them to give her a piece of beard and show her first how to leave the forest, and then to continue to Daugėliškis. The peasant and his wife took great pity on Dvoyre, who no longer resembled a human being. They promised that at night they would take her to their farm. They went away.

An eternity passed before Dvoyre saw the peasant woman coming, bringing bread and a bottle of milk. Dvoyre looked at the bread, something she hadn’t seen for several weeks, as if it were a priceless treasure. At first she decided to keep it for several days. She broke off little pieces and carefully placed them in her mouth. The peasant woman looked.on and wiped her eyes. After she went away Dvoyre ate all of the bread and drank all of the milk. A few hours later the peasant came, bringing her a coat to put on. During the night he brought Dvoyre to his house and had her lie down on the oven. Dvoyre grew sick from eating the bread and milk. Her intestines had atrophied, and didn’t work properly. She fainted on the oven. As a result, the peasant didn’t want to keep her any longer. At 4:00 a.m. he took her out onto the road. But Dvoyre wandered back into the forest, where she stayed for three days. On the third day Dvoyre met a peasant woman coming from Švenčionys. She was carrying a package of Jewish clothes that she had bought at auction. The peasant woman took Dvoyre along with her and brought her to a bath house near the forest. Her farm was not far from the spot. At the bath house the woman put Dvoyre into a barrel and covered her over. She told Dvoyre to be very careful, so that her husband didn’t find out, because he was terribly cruel and a drunkard.

At night the son came to Dvoyre and brought her a warm coat. Some time later the mother and the daughter came into the bath house. They were very sympathetic toward Dvoyre and pulled her shoes off her swollen feet. They gave her clothes so she could change, and they fed her. The next morning the peasant woman brought a bucket of hot coals into the bath house. Dvoyre warmed herself, and didn’t know how to thank the good peasant woman. As she lay in the bath house, Dvoyre constantly relived all of the horrors she had lived through in the course of the past weeks.

Near the bath house was a lake in the forest. The splashing of the water and the rustle of the leaves in the trees were the sounds that comforted Dvoyre. Dvoyre had something to entertain and comfort her. The lake and the forest became her friends, but not for long. After the peasant woman had kept her in the bath house for eight days, she announced that she was afraid of her husband, and asked Dvoyre to go away.

During the eight days in the bath house Dvoyre regained some of her strength. Her intestines, which had become atrophied during the six weeks she had stayed in the forest eating nothing but grasses and berries, began to function again. Yet her feet were still swollen.

The peasant woman gave her warmer clothes to wear, and food to bring along. At 2:00 a.m. the peasant woman took Dvoyre’s arm and walked with her twenty-odd kilometers toward Daugėliškis. Dvoyre walked with a stick in one hand, and the other hand holding on to the good peasant woman. In the morning the peasant woman brought her onto a road, said goodbye and wept. Dvoyre knew the roads in that area very well. She avoided people, lying in fields and forests during the day. At night she went onto the road. At 2:00 a.m. she passed her home town.

The Jewish houses stood in a cloak of mourning, as if they had been orphaned. It seemed to Dvoyre that she was walking through a huge Jewish cemetery. In one house partisans were getting drunk, partying and dancing with Lithuanian girls from town. When she passed through the town she arrived at the village of Wasuli, one kilometer from town, where she went to the home of the peasant Matzulis, with whom Dvoyre had hidden some of her better things. Dvoyre knocked on the door. The peasant was quite familiar with Dvoyre’s voice, but he didn’t open the door. He had considered her dead for a long time, and considered himself the inheritor of her possessions. After she had knocked on the door for a long time, the criminal peasant opened the door and threw a bit of bread and cheese out at her. When she left the peasant’s house, Dvoyre found a partisan on the way. She threw herself down by the side of the road and covered herself over with snow. The partisan passed by without seeing her.

She lay in the Christian cemetery in Daugėliškis until morning, and then she went to a village near the town, to the home of the peasant Mikodem. She had given some goods to this man for safekeeping as well. Dvoyre stayed at a bath house without the peasant’s knowledge for three days without eating or drinking. Outside it was extremely cold by then. One night she went into the peasant’s house. The children were afraid when they saw Dvoyre, and raised a commotion. The peasant took Dvoyre into another room and gave her food. He didn’t allow her to stay in the bath house. He promised to show her where to go. Letting Dvoyre go out of the house first, the peasant shut the door behind her and went back into the house. The peasant was unhappy that the owner of the things that had been left with him was still alive, and that she was trying to stay alive even longer. Dvoyre continued wandering for three more days without finding any rest for her swollen legs.

When Dvoyre went to the home of the peasant Shtzeponis in the village of Maligtalishki, two kilometers from town, he received her warmly, drew a bath for her, and gave her food and drink. Dvoyre stayed in the hay in the good peasant’s barn for two weeks, through terribly cold weather. The peasant did everything he could to make Dvoyre stronger and healthier. Dvoyre had left some of her things with this peasant as well. The two Jewish survivors from New Daugėliškis, Moyshe ­Isser Gordon and Avrom Ushfal hid at the home of the same peasant Shtzeponis in the village of Maliglalishki.

Dvoyre learned from this peasant that Jews were still living freely in Vidz, and no-one was bothering them. After she had been at the peasant’s home for two weeks, he took her to the town of Vidz. When she had been in Vidz for three weeks, there was an order for all of the refugees to register at the German gendarmerie. Of course the refugees avoided doing this, and a large number of them left the town. Dvoyre did not register, either. She spent the day among Jews, and at night she went to the home of a Polish tailor named Skurka.

Dvoyre paid him for this with two pieces of cloth that could be made into clothes. Some time later people began to say that Vidz and several other White Russian towns would be assigned to Lithuania. This was very bad news for the refugees from Lithuanian towns. They hadn’t forgotten the Lithuanians, and they feared them like the worst wild beasts. Some of the refugees snuck out of town and went further into White Russia, to Kazan, Pastoviai and other locations. A certain Polish peasant had a reputation at the time for being a very reliable person who managed to transport people from Vidz into White Russia.

This was the peasant Kazimezh Cintzik from the village of Sarkishki. Dvoyre met the good peasant, and with tears in her eyes she begged him to save her and bring her to his home in the country. The peasant promised to talk it over with his wife, and to bring her an answer the next day. Dvoyre promised to give him everything that belonged to her and that she had hidden in the countryside. She promised to reward him separately after the war. The next morning the peasant came and gave her the good news that he had convinced his wife, and the same day he brought Dvoyre to his farm.

The peasant and his wife Ruzhe received Dvoyre very warmly, fed her and gave her something to drink. They kept her on the oven in their house. After two weeks Dvoyre wrote letters to all of the peasants in the countryside with whom she had hidden some of her things, saying that she was in the Gluboki ghetto, and asking them to send back her possessions with the peasant. In the letter she wrote to the murderous peasants who hadn’t allowed her into their houses, she threatened that if they didn’t return her things she would report them to the Germans.

The letters were effective. The good peasant Tzincik took back Dvoyre’s possessions from everyone, and he was very happy that he had the chance to save Dvoyre from death, and also that he would have enough for himself and his wife.

When she had been at the peasant’s home for a month, two Jews named Yitzkhok Katzerginsky and Shakhe Klumel came to the peasant. Neither of them wanted to go into the ghetto, and instead they had escaped from town. The peasant was friendly with them, and he took both of them in. He arranged a hiding place for the three Jews in an attic disguised by a false wall. During the summer the Jews stayed in the hiding place in the attic. For the winter he made the Jews a small hiding place inside his house, next to the oven. The peasant did everything he could to make the situation tolerable for the Jews.

His wife Ruzhe, a Polish woman, was very bad to the Jews, however. She was a very mean woman and she hated Jews. She begrudged them the food they received. She especially bullied and hated Dvoyre, whom she would wake in the middle of the night and force to do various tasks.

Dvoyre helped with knitting, sewing, peeling potatoes and the like. More than once she actually beat Dvoyre and ordered her to leave her house. Kashimezh suffered a great deal on account of this, and he was afraid to start a commotion. When his wife wasn’t around he gave Dvoyre extra food and comforted her. He even told the Jews that he wanted to leave his wife. Yet he was afraid she might report him. After the Red Army advanced in the spring of 1944, Ruzhe herself calmed down a bit and stopped persecuting Dvoyre.

The three Jews were liberated by the Red Army in the month of July 1944. After the liberation Dvoyre handed over to the peasant Kazhimezh Tzincik the deeds to two houses in New Daugėliškis. The peasant couldn’t forgive Ruzhe for bullying the Jews, and after the liberation he separated from her.

The following relatives of Dvoyre died at the compound in Švenčionėliai: Her brother Moyshe, who lived in New Daugėliškis; her brother. Avrom, his wife Rokhel, their child Leybele, aged eight, along with Avrom’s sister Feyge, her husband Shmuel Gawenda and their four children: their daughter Reyzl, aged 20; their son Dovid; a girl named Khanele, aged 14; and Dvoyrele, aged 12, all living in Ignalina. From Adutiškis: Dvoyre’s brother Yitzkhok-Motl and his wife Basye and three young daughters, Reyzele, Gitele and Libele.

Leyb Koniuchowsky collected 121 testimonies from Holocaust victims, which were made public in: The Lithuanian Slaughter of its Jews: The Testimonies of 121 Jewish survivors of the Holocaust in Lithuania, recorded by Leyb Koniuchowsky, in Displaced Persons’ Camps (1946-48)

About the Author
Grant Arthur Gochin currently serves as the Honorary Consul for the Republic of Togo. He is the Emeritus Special Envoy for Diaspora Affairs for the African Union, which represents the fifty-five African nations, and Emeritus Vice Dean of the Los Angeles Consular Corps, the second largest Consular Corps in the world. Gochin is actively involved in Jewish affairs, focusing on historical justice. He has spent the past twenty five years documenting and restoring signs of Jewish life in Lithuania. He has served as the Chair of the Maceva Project in Lithuania, which mapped / inventoried / documented / restored over fifty abandoned and neglected Jewish cemeteries. Gochin is the author of “Malice, Murder and Manipulation”, published in 2013. His book documents his family history of oppression in Lithuania. He is presently working on a project to expose the current Holocaust revisionism within the Lithuanian government. He is Chief of the Village of Babade in Togo, an honor granted for his philanthropic work. Professionally, Gochin is a Certified Financial Planner and practices as a Wealth Advisor in California, where he lives with his family. Personal site: https://www.grantgochin.com/
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