Stories are passed everyday between people. They help society communicate and grow. Stories are the interpretations of life experiences. Taylor Krmac, a current student of Wollongong University, believes that “stories are moments that change or impact your life forever. Where you put your fears and feelings aside and jump.”
One story held close to Taylors heart is the one of his grandmother. Julie Krmac was born in Slovenia, a small country boarding Italy in Europe. At the age of eight her father was killed by Italian Fascists, during WWII. This lead to her mother leaving to live in Italy to look after their other property. Julie was left to look after her three younger brothers and with the boarders between Slovenia and Italy closed, she was completely alone.
The main story in Julie’s life that impacts Taylor was when Julie was 17 years of age. Her childhood sweetheart suggested that one night they should cross the boarder into Italy and flee to America. Julia agreed and organized in secret to pack up her belongings and illegally cross the boarder, leaving her brothers behind.
When it reach 8pm one night, when it was dark enough to not be notice, they set off on a 15km walk on their hands and knees. It took them several hours to reach the boarder after crawling the whole way through mud only praying to not be caught cause the consequence was death on the spot.
This one moment in Julie’s her fears and feeling had to be put aside, creating this incredible story. “This story means so much because if it wasn’t for the bravery of my grandmother and her childhood sweetheart, who turns out to be my granddad, I would not be standing here today,” stated Taylor. This story impacted him by the sheer passion and drive the two of them had for a better life.
Once they reach Italy they worked for 9 months saving enough money to purchase a ticket for a ship to America. By the time they saved enough money they had missed the ship to America and decided to relocate to Australia on a working ship called the Fairsea.
Once they arrived in Australia the couple was split with Julie being sent to work as a maid for a lawyer and Taylor’s grandfather to work in a concert factory. “They were spilt for a long period of time, but their love never died.”
Finally the two were reunited thanks to Julie’s bosses who heard her story and organized for the two to be together. “This story opens up my eyes to the world, the good and the bad parts. But it also shows me the love can survive anything. That kind of loves gives me hope,” stated Taylor.
Sadly last year Taylor’s grandfather past away, leaving Julie by herself. “She often talks about him and misses him, but she has also gone on with her life, living for the both of them.”