Sunderland survivor’s tale of war-torn Hungary

Author Anthony Gyimes, 76, of Ryhope Road who has written his first novel describing events his family lived through in Hungary

Author Anthony Gyimes, 76, of Ryhope Road who has written his first novel describing events his family lived through in Hungary

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A WAR survivor who fled communism is set to meet fans of his first novel at a book signing in The Bridges on Saturday.

Anthony Gyimes left the Eastern Bloc in 1970 to seek asylum in Sunderland with his partner.

The 76-year-old had spent his childhood in war-torn Hungary, and experienced communism after the defeat of the Nazis in 1945.

He has now written a historical novel which describes the time and the struggle his family faced.

“It is about members of my family – my grandparents,” he told the Echo.

“My father is mentioned, but he fought on the Russian front, and we were in Nazi territory.”

The novel follows two women – Regina and Valeria – and the struggles they faced looking after their families during the conflict.

“It took me a fairly long time to write,” said Anthony. “My sight is not so good, and at the time my partner was in hospital having a biopsy, but once she came home I was able to write.”

Anthony, of Ryhope Road, lived with partner Eileen Olswang, an ex-Thornhill School teacher, who died aged 88, for 41 years. He visited Hungary again in 1988.

The novel – Dawn of Dawns – was published in the UK and Hungary last year.

“I think it has been doing quite well,” he said. “Friends in Hungary like it and everyone has given good reports. I think I did the best I could.”

The signing will take place from noon to 2pm tomorrow in Waterstones.