House for the Disabled and Elderly

Address: 2 Vilis Lazis Street, Moscow

House No. 9 for the Disabled and Labor Veterans. ​Photo: www.pvt9.ru

House No. 9 for the Disabled and Labor Veterans.
Photo: pvt9.ru

By 1979, Shalamov was seriously ill and could no longer take care of himself without someone constantly looking after him. As a result, Shalamov was placed in House No. 9 for Invalids and Labor Veterans. 

Shalamov’s friends came to visit him there, and some, including Irina Sirotinskaya, managed to write down poems, which Shalamov (nearly deaf) read aloud.

 
Shalamov in House No. 9 for the Disabled and Labor Veterans. Photo by Kristina Miletich

Shalamov in House No. 9 for the Disabled and Labor Veterans.
Photo by Kristina Miletich

Shalamov was attracting increasing attention, which worried the authorities. He was under threat of being removed to the house for the psychologically ill. In September 1981, Shalamov was examined and soon the administrators revealed his diagnosis: “senile dementia.” E.V. Zakharova organized an independent examination, which proved that Shalamov was mentally sane. However, this result was not considered official and it was not taken into account by the administration. In January 14, Shalamov was transferred to the house for the psychologically ill. He died there three days later. 

Sergey Solovyov