book “Spomenica Mostara 1941-1945.”
another document or proof of the memorial stone (e.g., a photograph).
Esad M FEJIĆ
ESAD ESA FEJIĆ, son of MUHAMED, born on March 24, 1918, in Mostar. A worker, player of “Velež” football club, a local bicycle racer with “his own ice skates for ice competitions,” an activist of the National Liberation Movement (NOP) in Mostar. He was the only fugitive from a Ustaše truck in July 1941 when several hundred Serbs from the city were taken to execution sites. In the same month, he joined the first group of fighters from Mostar to Eastern Herzegovina to organize an uprising. He was wounded and captured by the Ustaše but was freed during an action carried out by Mostar’s underground members (Mladen Balorda and Ahmed Pintul). The wounded Esad (“muscles of his arm were torn, blood vessels ruptured, bones protruded”) was then operated on by Dr. Zvonko Marić and medical student Alija Krpo, and after the surgery, he initially hid in Ajnija Arap’s apartment but was later transferred to the hospital for treatment under a false name. Upon his return to Mostar, he worked in an underground group that collected weapons, medical supplies, and other necessities for partisan units. As an underground member, he and a group of partisans from the unit infiltrated an Italian camp in Mostar and seized large quantities of ammunition, taking them to Boračko Lake.
He was caught as a courier by the Italians in the spring of 1942 above Mostar and taken to the Mamula camp, where his brother Šefkija was also interned. He wrote to his mother that “he and his brother and other Mostar residents are being transferred to a new camp (Visco di Udine in Italy, ed.), that they will probably be fine, and that he has received all the money and packages, while his brother hasn’t.
A member of the Communist Party of Yugoslavia (KPJ) since 1943. Twenty days before the capitulation of fascist Italy, Esad and several Mostar residents were sent to Dubrovnik, where they encountered the capitulation of Italy and the disintegration of the Italian army. Esad and his comrades arrived in Mostar, and the Mostar group from the Visco di Udine camp joined the Slovenian partisans, fighters of the Šercer Brigade. At that time, Esad became a fighter of the Mostar Partisan Detachment, which carried out sabotage actions on the Sarajevo-Mostar railway, but he soon left on his own initiative with his best friend Huso Orman. They went to Mostar with the intention of carrying out several actions in the city. One of their plans was to capture a German colonel and exchange him for their arrested comrades, but they were told in Mostar that they were not allowed to take independent actions due to possible reprisals. They then decided to confront the “Jasenovac executioners” in western Herzegovina. Before their departure, in Esad’s backyard, in the midst of occupied Mostar, they took a photo dressed as partisans. They were photographed by Salem Maslić, and the film was developed by the owner of the photographic store Kolaković, who kept it until the liberation of Mostar on February 14, 1945. A few days after the photo was taken, in the village of Grab near Ljubuški, they managed to “eliminate an Ustaše sergeant” while “fighting him in a dark room”. They then continued to the Partisan unit in western Herzegovina, where Esad later became a commissar and Huso became a commander.
Esad was killed in January 1945 in Čapljina as an officer of OZNA (Department of National Security), hit by gunfire from an Ustaše machine gun that was positioned on a tower in the city center.
He is described as an “unusually daring and resourceful young man,” “one of the bravest fighters and commanders of the Mostar Battalion.” One of the five deceased members of the Fejić family (four brothers and one sister): Džemal, Ešref, Esad, Samija. Esad’s two uncles were also killed by the Germans (one of them is dr Asim Opijač). The famous song “Mostarska mati” by Mostarske kiše is dedicated to Šefko’s mother, Adila Fejić. You can read about the interview that Mišo Marić published with Adila in 1972 here. One of the most famous streets in Mostar is named after the Fejić brothers.
According to the archives of Radmilo Braca Andrić, the remains of Esad Fejić were transferred and buried in the Partisan Memorial Cemetery in Mostar.
EXCERPTS FROM LITERATURE:
On the liberation of the wounded Esad from captivity:
“They all felt safe. They marked their new routes on the maps, thinking that one patrol was enough to secure their carefree rest. But suddenly, a burst of machine-gun fire tore through the air, and rifles blazed from all sides at the group of communists scattered in the bay. A fight broke out. Three communists were captured, while others managed to safely return to Mostar. One Ustasha was killed by the bomb thrown by Esad Fejić, but Esad himself was seriously wounded in the arm. In this injured state, he found himself among the local Ustashas, ten kilometers away from the battle site. The local Ustashas did not recognize him. He, in his own clever way, prepared a new dangerous game for them. When he saw that he couldn’t cross over to the other side, he calmly approached them and said, ‘Quickly give me bandages. Can’t you hear the fight? We were fighting with the Chetniks and the Communists.’
They bandaged his wound, but still didn’t believe the truth of his stories. To buy time and create an opportunity for escape, he suggested, ‘Alright, if you don’t believe me, then let one of you escort me to the Ustasha headquarters in Mostar. There you will find out who I am.’
They sent him to the city with two villagers. ‘Do you know where the Ustasha headquarters is?’ Esad asked his escorts. ‘We don’t know!’ ‘I will guide you there.’
He led them towards Carina. He was convinced that his friends along the way would certainly help him free himself from the Ustashas. And so it was. Soon they encountered Mladen Balorda—shot by the Germans in ’43 as the deputy commander of the Mostar Battalion—and Ahmet Pintul, who died in early ’44 as the commander of the Mostar Partisan Battalion. They were Esad’s best comrades. I also knew them very well. Balorda approached the escorts without hesitation and asked:
‘Where are you taking that prisoner?’ ‘We are supposed to hand him over to the Ustasha headquarters. We don’t know who he is…’ ‘We are from the Ustasha headquarters. Come with us,’ Pintul intervened.
Confused by their arrival in the city itself, the villagers obediently followed the two ‘city Ustashas’, who provided them with a certificate ‘issued’ by the ‘Ustasha headquarters’ in a house, stating that they had properly completed their task. And so Esad once again gained his freedom, in clandestinity.”
grupa autora: Spomenica Mostara 1941-1945.; Konjhodžić, Mahmud (1981): “Mostarke”: fragmenti o revolucionarnoj djelatnosti i patriotskoj opredjeljenosti žena Mostara, o njihovoj borbi za slobodu i socijalizam, Opštinski odbor SUBNOR-a Mostar; Seferović, Mensur (2014): Život piše svoju priču, Bosanska biblioteka Čikago; Seferović, Mensur (1981): „Istočno i zapadno od Neretve“, „Narodna armija“, Beograd ; Seferović, Mensur (1970): Pred očima grada, »Informativni centar Mostar«, nagrada »14. februar« Skupštine opštine Mostar, 1970; Seferović, Mensur: Mostarski kolopleti, edicija “Mostar u borbi za slobodu”, knjiga 8, Mostar; Seferović, Mensur (1958): “Bataljon u okupiranom gradu”, Sarajevo; група аутора (1986): Херцеговина у НОБ 3., Београд Photo: Seferović, Mensur (2014): Život piše svoju priču, Bosanska biblioteka Čikago; S. Demirović
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