My mother's family lived in a small coastal town called Cesme in Ottoman Turkey. In 1922, they, and over a million ethnic Greeks living peacefully along the Easter Aegean Coast, were deported to Greece in a population exchange with Turkey that became brutal and violent. Hundreds of thousands of Greeks, Armenians, Jews, and other ethnic groups were killed during a genocidal ethnic cleansing that was called forever after by the Greeks, "The Catastrophe".
The following podcast provides some glimpses into my family's story, one that I heard at my mother's knee when I was a child. Fear, sadness, heartbreak, tragedy, heroism, and a ray of happiness: the birth of my mother, Eutychia (happiness in Greek).
Podcast: Please click here.