ISSN 2330-717X

My Ancestors, My Father And My Grandfathers – Essay


My father’s father, Mülazım Sani (first lieutenant) Abdullah Bey was born in Eğirdir in 1890. After graduating from Isparta middle school (secondary school), he joined the army at the age of 15-16, he fought in Palestine in Hejaz, Arabia, he served as the gendarmerie station commander in Üsküdar istanbul during the 1919-1922 armistice period. He received a bullet wound in the groin in battle of Sakarya during the War of Independence, and he was among the first cavalrymen who entered Izmir in 1922. He received the Independence Medal as a combat veteran. While he was the Gendarmerie Commander from Keçiborlu, he was involved in an unfortunate incident and had to leave his military service. His later life was spent with alcohol addiction, which he took refuge to relieve war stress (pwts). He worked as a teacher and imam in villages with the Arabic he learned in Arab countries. He passed away in 1944.


My grandmother’s father, Rafi Bey, was martyred in the 1913 Balkan War in the trenches of Edirne. My grandmother lost her mother when she was born, and after Rafi bey’s loss, she was left alone. Rafi’s second wife, Aunt İnce, married my young grandmother to her brother Abdullah. My grandmother’s life was spent weaving carpets on the carpet loom.

My mother’s father Abdülkadir Bey, was born in the 1880s, was the clerk of the Istanbul Aksaray court. He died of a heart attack in the 1930s.

My late father, Ismail, studied without a father, without money, without shelter, under difficult conditions. After graduating from Ankara Law Faculty, he became a judge. When the romantic diaries he wrote during his university years were borrowed and not returned by my cousin, he wrote his memoirs once again in recent years, becoming a more up-to-date realistic and mature narrative.

Challenging my memory, I realize how little I know about my grandparents. They didn’t want to remember the past, they wanted to forget the hard times.

My grandparents lived short, they died early, their widows and orphaned children went through hard times. This was the fate of the geography, they had to suffer the consequences of war and mismanagement. My parents were the children of republic Turkey, they lost their father early, the new republic fathered them, they worked hard, they wanted the best for their children and they gave their best. We owe them a lot.


Your comments are always welcome.

Haluk Direskeneli

Haluk Direskeneli, is a graduate of METU Mechanical Engineering department (1973). He worked in public, private enterprises, USA Turkish JV companies (B&W, CSWI, AEP, Entergy), in fabrication, basic and detail design, marketing, sales and project management of thermal power plants. He is currently working as freelance consultant/ energy analyst with thermal power plants basic/ detail design software expertise for private engineering companies, investors, universities and research institutions. He is a member of Chamber of Turkish Mechanical Engineers Energy Working Group.

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