St. Petersburg, June 19, 2021. Mr. Ľubomír Rehák, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Slovak Republic to Russia, visited the Tsarskoye Selo State Museum in Pushkin, a local part of St. Petersburg. On this occasion, the Ambassador also visited the area of the Museum of the First World War, the only museum dedicated to this conflict in the entire Russian Federation. The Museum is part of the palace complex of Russian tsars, where the common oak (Quercus robur) was planted on October 26, 2018 as the first foreign Tree of Peace, which is also marked by a memorial pillar with a plaque.
At that time, Marek Sobola, the initiator of the Tree of Peace idea, was also allowed to plant another tree, which was excavated directly in “Lalinok”, the local part of the Divinka village. Divinka is located in the northwest of Slovakia and in 1880 Ondrej Sobola, great-grandfather of Marek Sobola, was born there, who put his life on the Russian front around 1915 and is buried in an unknown place. This oak, from the Lalinok locality Dubová hill (in English Oak hill) is the author’s personal memory and a tribute to his ancestor. He has a symbolically similar fate with Ondrej – oak was sprouted and grew up in Lalinok and now grows in Russia, in a place that is connected with the main actors of the First World War, which deeply affected the fate of the Sobola family from Lalinok. The tree from Dubová is also a symbolic grave of Ondrej Sobola.