Lempi Vilhelmiina Koivisto

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Lempi Vilhelmiina Koivisto

Finnish: Lempi Vilhelmiina Koivisto (Mäki), Russian: Koivisto
Death: November 11, 1987 (89)
Petrozavodsk, Gorod Petrozavodsk, Republic of Karelia, Russia (Russian Federation)
Immediate Family:

Daughter of Johan Gustaf Johan Gustafsson Mäki and Minna Hermannintytär Mäki
Wife of Kustaa Sakarias Karlinpoika Koivisto
Mother of Pentti Kustaa Koivisto and Martti Hendric Koivisto
Sister of Manni Oskar Juhokustaanpoika; Tyyne Maria Mäki; Hannes Henrik Juho-Kustaanpoika Mäki; Karl Gustaa Mäki; Anna Sofia Mäki and 1 other

Managed by: Stacy Sofia Siivonen
Last Updated:

About Lempi Vilhelmiina Koivisto

Lempi Vilhelmiina Koivisto (nee Mäki), mother Lempi was born and raised in Rukkamäki in Messukylä. When she was 16, she went to Tampere linen factory spinning mill, where worked until the [white guard] takeover of Tampere under Civil War. Lempi participated in Rantaperkiö Worker's association already when she was young. In the founding meeting of social democrat youth league Rantaperkiö chapter in Apr 26. 1916 was an interim board elected where Lempi Mäki along some others was elected. May 7 there was election of permanent board and Lempi Mäki was elected and they decided to apply membership for social democrat youth league and regional association July 1, 1916. When working in the workers' association Lempi and Kusti found each other. They were married in Oct. 16th, 1920. When they married, Lempi became a housewife in Ojanrinne. Jul 19, 1921 Pentti Kustaa was born. May 1923 Kustaa decided to leave for Canada. Ojanrinne was sold and Lempi and her son waited for a ticket to Canada. By Christmas 1923 Lempi and Pentti arrived in the town of St. Porcupine in Canada. Kusti was working as a lumberjack in Nikkanen's forestry cabin. Lempi helped Nikkanen's wife with her household chores. When they become richer they bought a house in Timmins. Kusti went to work in mines, Lempi was a housewife and was activist in "Haali", collected support for the USSR and worked in a drama club. In 1930-1931 in USA and Canada there started recruiting for moving to the USSR, Karelia, especially. Lempi was taken over by that frenzy. Even though Kusti was against it, because the youngest son Martti Hendric (Feb 21, 1928) was living his fourth year and life was secure, family left for Karelia, Petrozavodsk. While in Petrozavodsk Lempi was interested in communal activities in Red Cross and in MOPR (red aid), which was directed at helping persecuted Communists. In September 1936 she and her sons (that were in her passport) took the citizenship of the USSR, as by motto, when in Rome, do as the Romans do. In October 1937 Kusti had to leave the country as he had Finnish citizenship. Lempi and her sons stayed in Petrozavodsk, the thought of returning with her husband was not possible and the boys were in her passport. The years of terror 1937-1938 started, acquaintaces, neighbors, relatives were taken to an unknown destination. The Finnish language activity became discontinued. Funds that Kusti had left when he had to leave were dwindling down and it was hard to find work, but Lempi always managed to find something. When the Winter War broke out Lempi was hearing the cultural hall turned into military hospital in Petrozavodsk. Work there continued until the Continuation War. In the beginning of the Continuation War the culture hall was again turned to military hospital. Petrozavodsk was evacuated by trains and by barges throug Lake Onega. Lempi was in Petrozavodsk with Martti, Pentti was in Leningrad. The hospital leadership suggested evacuation if necessary, but when the front line was 50 kilometers from Petrozavodsk Lempi decided to leve with Martti through Lake Onega into unknown on Sept. 14th. The route was by barge across Lake Onega, then the channel of Mary to Kazan in Volga, then up river Kama as far as the river was open. The destination was reached Oct 15th 1941. Work, work! She was out of money. So Lempi went to a logging site to burn branches and peel tree bark. It was five kilometers there and back on the river ice to the other shore of the river. The winter was harsh and Kusti's two parcels that was sent between wars came in great need. One contained fabric for Pentti's suit, which Lempi bartered for food. A new year began. She became more accustomed to local life. She moved with Martti from the main village to kolkhoz, where every other day she was given 1 kg of flour and soil (red earth) for cultivation. Lempi cut, cornhusked and mowed, Martti worked horses. Familiar evacuees started to visit her. She already had a pig in the household. In the main village they sought after launderer and washer in sauna for a children's daycare evacuated from Leningrad. That is how Lempi with Martti moved to Belaevka main village at river Kama. When Petrozavodsk was liberated Lempi headed to Karelia. August 8, 1944 she entered her emptied flat. Back to work, this time heating a cinema. There she worked till 1956 after which she spent peaceful days of retirement with her son Martti. She often visited her sister Anna Lahtinen and met friends from her youth, but had no interest in moving back to Finland. She was bedridden at home for years when she battled a serious illness. The course of her life ended November 11, 1987. She is buried in Besovetsk cemetary in Petrozavodsk, Russia.

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Lempi Vilhelmiina Koivisto's Timeline

February 26, 1898
July 19, 1921
Tampere, Finland
February 21, 1928
November 11, 1987
Age 89
Petrozavodsk, Gorod Petrozavodsk, Republic of Karelia, Russia