Hello America

A Memoir
By Mary Matuja
10 Digit ISBN:
13 Digit ISBN: 978-1-63413-584-9
LCCN: 2015909187
Price: $14.95
Trim: 6x9
Format (pb/hc): Paperback
Pages: 160
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In Hello America, a historical and heart-rending memoir, author Mary Matuja recounts her harrowing experience as a young girl in WWII Nazi occupied Czechoslovakia, how she came to be an American, and ultimately a city Councilwoman and a Mayor Pro Tem In Roseville, Michigan.

Until her solo immigration to America when she was ten, to meet a mother she had never known, Mary had been living happily with her grandparents in Certizne, a rural Czechoslovakian village without plumbing or electricity, until the bombs started.  Then her whole village spent their days hiding in the only root cellar that existed, with the children huddled around the edges in case a bomb landed in the middle, that they might survive the impact.  Bored and daring, Mary crept out to run in the grassy hills, and accidently orchestrated her family's courageous escape by befriending a Nazi soldier and bonding over chocolate.

Filled with first-hand accounts of war, loss, and bravery, Hello America brings an unprecedented bold and childlike perspective to the WWII narrative.  Mary's immigration story, beginning with her primitive and treacherous childhood, moving into her years of adjustment and assimilation with her new family in America,and ending with a personally and professionaly successful middle class life in suburban Detroit is the perfect example of the American Dream.



Mary (Hoč-Bobak) Matuja immigrated to America in 1949 at age 10. She was unable to speak English and made the long journey alone to be reunited with her mother from whom she was separated at the age of 4 months.

Prior to arriving in America, she lived with her grandparents in the village of Ćertizne, Czechoslovakia. With her family and neighbors, she survived WWII by living in the forest and in barns until the war ended and the families were allowed to return to their homes.

In America, Mary adapted and adjusted, and she compiled many notable achievements throughout her school career. After marriage, she began a life of public service. As a mother she pushed for educational excellence. As a councilwoman and member of many civic organizations, she has given tirelessly and selflessly to her community. She lectures in classrooms on WWII and immigration. She believes that the true measure of a country and humankind is to build upon where the previous generations left off.