Mihail Decean Exhumation of martyr-heroes with an excavator
Day one

August 31, 2015 started beautifully and it was almost hot, even in that mountain region. I was surprised that the weather forecast was so accurate. The three days we spent in the mountains and at Bistra were sunny and beautiful, so we were very lucky. Heavy rains accompanied by thunderstorms began on the night of September 2 and lasted a week. It would have been impossible to begin the exhumation works during such bad weather, if September 7 had been the first day of work. The exhumation would have been postponed once again, until the following year or years.

In the morning, Gheorghe Petrov gave us the starting signal, so we left Bistra and took the road to Muntele Mare, to arrive at Groşi, at an altitude of some 4,000 ft. There were several cars and more than 15 persons who gathered there, after having travelled on the ascending road, recently improved, much better than in 2010, when I first came here. All those three days we enjoyed the magnificent scenery of the Apuseni Mountains.

We, the five volunteers, Maria Decean, Liviu Mihai Decean, Alin Stânea, Petru (Petrică) Stânea and I paid for our transportation, accommodation and meals. Alin was of great help with his jeep. Every day (from August 31 to September 2) he drove our group from Bistra to Muntele Mare in perfectly safe conditions, just a few yards away from the partisans’ camp.

The IICCMRE officials who came there on the first day were Cosmin Budeancă and Gheorghe Petrov, accompanied by the professionals Paul Scrobotă, Horațiu Groza and Gabriel Rustoiu. The following day, by noon, Marius Oprea came too.

The mayor of the Bistra village, Traian Gligor, a very kind man, was also at Groşi, together with the driver of the excavator required for the exhumation. I heard Marius Oprea (Petrov’s boss) joking ironically: Gheorghe Petrov is the inventor of the archaeological diggings with an excavator, but he had not been there from the very first day to prevent his subordinate from doing it. In fact, all the time we spent there together, I never felt that the relationship among the IICCMRE officials was the typical rigid subordinate-boss relationship. On the contrary, they were friendly and sincere with each other and joked all the time. They left the impression of a close-knit team.