Frank Veszely was born in Kispest, a suburb of Budapest, Hungary, in 1936, into a middle class family. He was an only child until his parents divorced and his father remarried, producing two siblings Brigitta (1946) and Zsolt (1948). After the Reformatus Gimnazium was closed by the communists he attended Fay Andras Gimnazium in Budapest, graduating in 1955. After four failed attempts to gain admittance to a university “because of lack of space” ( a standard rejection slip of the day the regime issued to children of “socially unfriendly elements” i.e. well to do farmers and the intelligentsia), he worked in a printshop. Conscripted into the Army, he expected to be called to duty in the fall of 1956, when the Hungarian revolution broke out. Having participated in the revolution and expecting retribution, he hid in the basement of a former teacher until he was able to leave the country on January 15, 1957.
He came to Canada as a landed immigrant on May 1, 1957. Sent to Winnipeg, he worked at the Lakehead region before buying a one way ticket to Vancouver. Trained with university students in the spring of 1958 and became a sleeping car porter for the CPR, a job he held until commencing university studies in 1965 at U.B.C. Taught in Kamloops from 1969 to 1996, completing a Diploma in Educational Administration at the University of Calgary in 1972. Upon retirement he attended the University College of the Cariboo (now David Thompson University), where he obtained a B. A. in English Literature in 1999. He has been writing extensively since retirement, and published a large collection of his works in Hungary (Bajban szépült életeim ISBN 9632184122) in 2005, as well as publishing in several Hungarian language magazines and periodicals. For more information and more of his works visit his home page on the web @ www.magyarkoltok.com
Read an excerpt from Frank Veszely’s From the Immigrant Saga here.
Read Frank Veszely’s short story End of a Dream here.