In 1941-1944 in Volodymyr-Volynskyi there was a concentration camp “Nord-oflag 365” (Stalag 12), organized by the Nazi occupiers. In total, during the three years of Hitler’s occupation, according to various sources, more than 25,000 prisoners of war were shot and died of starvation, epidemics and torture. A total of 42,000 prisoners were tortured behind barbed wire.
At the burial place of the victims of the concentration camp after the war there was a municipal landfill. However, the influential families of the officers killed in the concentration camp managed to clear the dump. In 1967 a memorial complex was built on the site of the concentration camp. Prominent Lviv artists worked on the creation of the complex: Teodoziya Bryzh – an honorary citizen of Volodymyr-Volynskyi, Yevhen Dzyndra and architect Yaroslav Nazarkevych.
The composition consists of nine 12-meter graves and two sculptures: “Sorrowful Mother” and “Prisoner”. The beginning is the collective image of a mother, wife, sister and the image of a prisoner – a symbol of an immortal life that can rise from the ashes. Words from a poem by Dmytro Pavlychko, a classic of modern Ukrainian poetry, are engraved on the pedestal. The complex is a historical monument of national importance