A BiH family which lost everything in the war managed to rebuild their lives thanks to thousands of goldfish.
Sounds unbelievable, but Associated Press published an article about the Malkoč family, mother Fehima and son Dževad, whose father Smail bought in 1990 an unusual aquarium with fish from Austria, which tells a miraculous story.
The village Jezero was bombed on 1992. The majority of residents had already left, and only the able-bodied residents stayed. One bomb hit the living room of the Malkoč family house, demolished everything, but the fish and aquarium remained undamaged. Not long after that, Smail Malkoč was killed.
When she returned three months later, Fehima Malkoč released four fish from the family aquarium into the local lake and then left this idyllic mountainous village in the northwest of Bosnia, some ten kilometers away from Bihać, together with her sons.
After the war, Fehima Malkoč and her family returned to the village. There she found no remnants of the idyllic past, but when she turned toward the lake, she saw something strange that took her breath away.
“The lake was shining because of countless goldfish which were swimming in it. I remembered my husband. He left me something that I never hoped for,” Fehima recalled.
Over the years, the underwater life blossomed and after returning home the Malkoč family started selling aquarium goldfish. When the Associated Press visited them in 1998, their house was entirely reconstructed and two new cars were parked in the driveway.
The Malkoč family achieved all those things thanks to the sale of fish which were bought by all bars and cafes in the region.
“It is a special kind of gift from my father. The fish survive even in the winter, although it was impossible to keep them in a house aquarium without a warmer before,” said Dževad Malkoč then.
Today, this lake is abundant with fish, from the tiniest ones to those which weigh several kilograms. Locals hunt them, breed them, but goldfish are not sold anymore.