Three days after their wedding, Anna Koslov kissed her husband Boris goodbye. A soldier in Russia’s Red Army, he was set to rejoin his military unit. The young couple expected that they would be together again soon, ready to begin the joys of married life, and to raise a family together.
But when Boris returned home from his military expedition, he found the house cold and empty. When he called his wife’s name, there was only the echo of his own voice. Anna was gone.
Under the brutal regime of Joseph Stalin, Anna and her family had been declared enemies of the state. Boris’ new bride was sent into exile in the vast plains of Siberia, with no chance to contact her husband. He didn’t even know if she was still alive.
“I threatened to commit suicide rather than go because I couldn’t live without him,” she told The Telegraph, “but in the end I was forced to go. It was the most miserable time of my life.”
Boris spent years searching for his lost love, but never found a trace of her. Over the years, both Boris and Anna remarried other people, and had children. But they never forgot about one another: After Boris became a writer, he dedicated a book to Anna, the woman he had loved and lived with for a mere three nights.
As time went by, Boris and Anna’s respective spouses passed away. In 2007, Anna, a lonely widow, went back to visit the old house where she and Boris had spent those precious few nights. Now an elderly woman, she wanted to pay tribute to the time they’d shared there, knowing that she would never see her husband again.
In a remarkable twist of fate, the town received another long-lost visitor on that very same day – an 80-year-old man who had come to lay flowers at his parents’ gravestone. But when he caught sight of the woman across the road, he knew something else had drawn him there.
“I thought my eyes were playing games with me,” Anna said. “I saw this familiar-looking man approaching me, his eyes gazing at me. My heart jumped. I knew it was him. I was crying with joy.”
It was Boris, the man she thought she’d lost for good 60 years ago.
“I ran up to her and said: ‘My darling, I’ve been waiting for you for so long. My wife, my life…” he said.
“I couldn’t take my eyes off her. Yes, I had loved other women when we were separated. But she was the true love of my life.”