Meelis Möttus’s father Harry Möttus (1921-1991) became a Forest Brother already in 1940. Since he had no blood on his hands, he voluntarily came out of the forest in 1954 – at the time, when the first deportees were returning home due the amnesty declared after Stalin’s death.
“My father did not tell me and my brothers much about his life in the forest,” Meelis recalls. He has known about his father’s difficult past since childhood. “Thirty years ago, as a schoolboy, I was in the forest with my father cutting timber, and he revealed a great secret to me, which I kept to myself for a long time,” Meelis says. Namely, before he came out of the forest, his father hid a sub-machine gun in the attic of the schoolhouse, under the floor next to the chimney. For the 75th anniversary of the Republic of Estonia, in memory of his father, Meelis Möttus opened the Forest Brethren shop in his home village, which is still in business. On the 80th anniversary of the Republic of Estonia, he organized the consecration of flags at dawn in front of the shop. Meelis also dared to bring the weapon out of its hiding place. The PPS sub-machine gun was made inoperable and given to the Möniste Museum, where it is currently on view.