For Lev, his histers had always been his dearest friends. During the siege of Leningrad both sisters risked their own lives to save Lev from starving. If it were not for them, he would have died at the age of 15. Mirra and Lydia taught Russian literature and language in secondary schools. Both were known as brilliant teachers. Pupils adored them; colleagues from other schools used to visit their lessons to pick up teaching methods; the poetry evenings and literary discussions they organized were a legend.