Memorie.al publishes the unknown story of the Tirana boy, Skerdi Llagami, suckling of one of the most famous families of the city of Tirana, who after serving for several years as a member of the special forces of the ‘BRISKU’ unit at the Ministry of Works Interior in Tirana, in March 1999, he went to Kosovo, joining the ranks of the Kosovo Liberation Army, where he was appointed as a battalion commander with the nickname “Commander Shpendi” and in that position he participated in many battles of fighting, mainly in the Dukagjini Plain and the Presevo Valley, until the end of the War, when NATO troops entered Kosovo. The rare testimony of Skerd’s father, Bardhyl Llagami, former chief engineer of the Stalin Textile Factory in Tirana, who tells the whole story of his only son, who did not return to Albania after the Kosovo War as well. had promised to his family, but went to Macedonia, attaching himself to the Headquarters of the Macedonian Albanian Liberation Army (with political commander, Ali Ahmeti), located in the Shar mountains, where he was appointed commander of a special unit that was directly under Ali Ahmeti’s dependence and at the head of it he took part in many battles and fighting, until June 29, 2001, when he was killed fighting heroically in the village of Begovi near Tetovo, during a battle with the forces of the Macedonian Ministry of Interior. How the Llagami family learned only after a year the murder of their only 33-year-old son and the reception with great honors paid to Bardhyl Llagami, colleagues and superiors of “Commander Shpend”, former KLA commanders in Kosovo and Macedonia , such as: Dilaver Goxhaj, Aqif Shehu, Fazlli Veliu, Ali Ahmeti, Gëzim Ostreni, etc.
Bardhyl Llagami, an 80-year-old man from Tirana who once worked as the chief engineer of the Textile Factory “Stalin” in Tirana and Director of the Ministry of Economy, even today is still not trusted and it seems like a bad dream that the boy his only one, Skerdi, is no longer alive! That ominous news that came to the Llagami family in July 2001 still seems to Bardhyl as a mystical and completely unbelievable thing! He still lives with the words that Skerdi said to him that morning in February 2001, when he called him from the Presevo Valley and begged him not to be upset, as he would be returning to Tirana, “as soon as he finished some small jobs”. The mysticism in the event of the murder of his son, Bardhyl, seems to him; or rather he wants to connect it with a distant event that happened 300 or so years ago.
At that time a young boy named Moç Llagami, after killing the Serbian post-commander in the Rugova Gorge, fled his hometown and came and settled in Tirana, where he later founded the Llagami tribe. So, according to Bardhyl, the Llagami tribe seemed to owe him a “debt” to wash away Kosovo, and fate met him to be his only son, 33-year-old Skerdilajd Llagami, or Commander “Shpendi” as they knew him all the KLA fighters, those of the Presevo Valley and then the National Liberation Army of the Albanians of Macedonia, where the powerful Tirana boy, commanded a special unit.
Who was Skerdi Llagami?
Skerdi was born on October 31, 1969 in the city of Tirana and was the first child of Bardhyl Llagami, who comes from a Tirana citizen family, at least for 300 years. The Llagami tribe is very well known and out of that door have emerged many intellectuals who have made a name for themselves in various fields of life, most of whom had graduated in Law and Linguistics. Ever since he was on the bench of “Myslym Keta” high school in Tirana, Skerdi was known for his strong physique and had a very beautiful body like that of Badi Building athletes. Encouraged even by his father, years ago he had started engaging in various sports exercises and promised high results in athletics running competitions. But he could not continue that sport, because he was forced to start work at the “Stalin” Textile Factory, where his father, Bardhyl, also worked, who later became the chief engineer of that Combine. In the early 1990s, like most of Tirana’s youth, Skerd Llagami became involved in the democratic process, supporting the December Movement, and even all the days that rallies continued in ‘Student City’, he was present there. . In this regard, his father Bardhyl testifies: “After being involved in all the movements of the democratic process which led to the collapse of the communist regime, in the years that followed, Skerdi became one of the most prominent activists of the Democratic Party. All these commitments, Skerdi never gave up his passion, of exercising with sports and his physique became the reason, that in 1977, he was taken as a member of the Special Forces (BRISKU) of the Ministry of Internal Affairs From the time he started working at that special unit, we in the family longed to see him, as he took part in all the special operations that took place to apprehend wanted persons, not only in Tirana but also in many He knew that both I and his mother (my wife, Happiness) and my younger sister were worried about him, and he never told us about the special operations he had taken part in. all those things I understood only by his comrades, who had just met me, told me to speak to Skerd, as he did not know the danger and was the first to enter between the bullets. Skerdi’s job made him absent from home and we missed seeing him. This went on until March 1999, when he left home forever and never returned, “recalls with tears in his eyes Bardhyl Llagami, the past of his son, Skerdi, a charming boy with an equally physique beautiful as those of actors playing the roles of arena gladiators in Hollywood movies.
Skerd’s escape to the KLA
“He did not tell any of us when he left to fight in the ranks of the Kosovo Liberation Army.” This is what Bardhyl Llagami says about his only son, Skerdi, who in March 1999, left the special unit of ‘BRISKU’ and fled to Kosovo. Regarding this and his later career in the ranks of the KLA, Bardhyl Llagami states: “He knew that we would not let him leave the house, as we had an only son and therefore he did not tell us that he had decided to flee and fight in Kosovo. Skerdi was a very compassionate and very sensitive guy. He was immediately affected by the suffering and misery of others he could not bear. I say this was one of the main reasons he left home, just at the time when Milosevic’s army began the mass displacement of Kosovars from their homes and all television screens were filled with gruesome pictures of Serb massacres of the innocent population of Kosovo. When Skerdi left home, we as a family were we were very worried and we were all alarmed as a tribe. For a long time we left no one unasked, but no one gave us any news of his whereabouts. The months passed and we still had no news of his fate. But he kept us hope that he will to be alive, for if something bad had happened to him, he would have been informed immediately. But we were comforted to think that he would have left Albania to work, like many of his younger peers. Thus, several months passed until November 13, 1999, when we learned the truth about his whereabouts from a daily newspaper. In that newspaper was published an interview with a young man from Albania, named Dritan Dyrmishi, who at that time was fighting as a battalion commander in the ranks of the Kosovo Liberation Army. To one of the questions asked by the interviewing journalist, who were the other Albanians who fought with him in Kosovo, he answered: “Skerdilajd Llagami, the commander of the battalion where death is safer”. “After this interview that we all enjoyed immensely, we again continued the search and tried several times to call the senior military superiors of the KLA, but again we did not learn anything about the fate of our son”, testifies Bardhyl Llagami, regarding the happiest news of his life, that his son, Skerdi, was alive and fighting in the ranks of the KLA.
From the KLA to the Presevo Valley
In the ranks of the Kosovo Liberation Army, where many other young people from Albania had gone to fight, Skerdi Llagami quickly became very famous. For his courage, bravery and fighting spirit that he had shown in all the battles where he had taken part in the Dukagjini Plain area, he was appointed as a battalion commander, in one of the military units operating in that province. In this regard, the father, Bardhyl, testifies: “Although we learned the news of Skerdi’s whereabouts, we were still anxious and frozen because we were not able to communicate with him by phone. This went on for months and what added to our anxiety was the fact that even though the war in Kosovo was over, he was not returning home. From Kosovo, our son Skerdi, who spoke to us from the Presevo Valley, where he had gone after the end of the Kosovo War, said: “Do not worry, I will return to Tirana one day. But as soon as I finish some small work, because here the problems are not over yet.” These were the last words we heard on the phone from Skerdi, because he stayed there and never came back, as he promised us… “, testifies Bardhyl Llagami, wiping the tears that flow from time to time over the cheeks.
The murder of ‘Commander Shpend’ in Tetovo!
But even after the end of the War in the Presevo Valley, 33-year-old Skerdi Llagami from Tirana, known by the nickname “Commander Shpendi”, who had made a name for himself in the ranks of the KLA, had not decided to return to his family in his home in the Albanian capital. But how did the life of the charming Tirana boy go, who had set himself the task of finding and fighting in all the military conflicts where the fates of his compatriots were endangered? Regarding this, his father, Bardhyl, testifies: “But even after the end of the war in that problematic area where Skerdi had fought again as a battalion commander, he did not return to Tirana. Immediately he left there and settled in the Sharr mountains. On Tetovo, where the National Liberation Army of the Albanians of Macedonia had just been established, commanded by the political leader Ali Ahmeti. a special unit, which was directly subordinated to Ali Ahmeti. In the ranks of that unit he took part in several battles until June 29, 2001, when he was killed fighting heroically in the village of Begovi near Tetovo, during a battle with the forces After Skerdi’s assassination, the special unit he commanded was christened “Shpendi”, taking the nickname given to him since he had been fighting in the KLA in Field in Dukagjini. “But we learned the news of his murder very late, only in July 2002, when the mother of Dritan Goxhi, Skerdi’s comrade-in-arms, who was in the ranks of the Kosovo KLA, came and told us,” recalls Bardhyl Llagami. in connection with the murder of his only son, Skerdi, who was escorted to his last home with great honors by all his War comrades. After receiving that news, Bardhyl left for Kosovo, where he was received with great honors from Dilaver Goxhaj, (former brigade commander in the KLA) his son’s comrades-in-arms and the Mayor of Gjakova, Aqif Shehu, who after walking him in all the places where his son had fought, called Skerdi: “Hero of Gjakova.” Then Aqif Shehu, with the former members of the KLA where Skerdi had fought, handed over Bardhyl on the border with Macedonia, where he was received by Ali Ahmeti’s representatives, who took him at the headquarters of their headquarters on Sharr Mountain, where, in addition to Ali Ahmeti, Bardhyl was received with great honors or Fazlli Veliu, Gëzim Ostreni and the entire KLA Headquarters, who took him to the place where his son was killed. At the foot of Sharr Mountain, near a mosque where Skerdilajd Llagami’s tomb was originally located, Ali Ahmeti and his fighters paid tribute and laid wreaths in honor of their former friend and colleague from Tirana, who gave his life fighting together with them, in the name of the rights of Albanians living in their lands, in Kosovo and Northern Macedonia.
The body of “Commander Shpend” in the ‘Martyrs’ Cemetery’ in Tirana
In 2013, with the initiative of the Association “Tirana” and its president, Arben Tafaj, it became possible to bring home the body of the ‘Martyr of the Fatherland’, Skerdilajd Llagami, (otherwise known as: “Commander Shpendi”), former KLA fighter in Kosovo and Macedonia. In the respective ceremonies, personalities from countries, family, relatives, etc. participated. The President of the Association “Tirana”, Arben Tafaj, the Prefect of Tirana Ruzhdi Keçi, etc. gave the keynote speech. The funeral ceremony took place at the Central Army House in Tirana, where the last homage was paid. At the end of the funeral ceremony, Bardhyl Llagami, Skerdi’s father, after thanking all those present and those who made possible the bringing of the remains of “Commander Shpend” to the homeland, conveyed the message that “We must put Albania above everything. Accompanied by bodyguards of honor and funeral marches, his body was buried in the ‘Cemetery of the Martyrs of the Fatherland’ in Tirana. /Memorie.al
Bardhyl Llagami’s poem, dedicated to his son,
Skerdit O bir!
What he found, what he found the ground floor house
It was held in black with a glimmer of hope
The night enveloped him
Night and mandate
U ku ku ‘!
How did you know that I loved you?
Your shadow came, you had work to do
You saw us slowly, slowly and slowly
Your silence was lively chatter
You wrote to both of us
O light of eyes
Hanging on the wall, the eagle and you
Yesterday you were a boy, today you are a photographer
Day to look
Water at night
Above your grave the snow that has fallen
The horse will be done, you gave us the word
Take both worlds
With myself and tears
Boy in Tirana, man in
The hero in Presevo falls in Tetovo
Raise the son from the grave
Go to the lapidary
Boys, girls will come
Snowflake elders even two
That they loved you so much
O foamy sea
Stay calm, sleep!
You had the king’s name, some silver thread
You crossed the rainbow, got the name “Bird”
The flowers are shy
O thou heaven without side, O thou heaven!
And you cut moon, and you sun!
How did you not say a word to us
When that boy fell on us
Tomb up there, near a mosque
Mountains all around, land
Tears run away
And the friends swear
You man, what are you, that you shot
The commander and the double-headed eagle
Do not forget that you turned them off
The brave fall to rise