Mikhail Gorokhovskii was born in 1926 in the town of Ruzhyn, 40 kilometers east of Berdichev, Ukraine. On July 9, 1941, three weeks after Operation Barbarossa began, the Germans captured the area. On September 10, the first mass shooting of Jews took place in Ruzhyn, where Mikhail's mother, one of his three brothers, his sister, and numerous more distant relatives were murdered. Mikhail, his brother Grisha, and their father Iosif were spared by the Nazis only to be confined in the ghetto of Ruzhyn. In March 1943, when the ghetto was being liquidated, Mikhail's brother Grisha was killed, but he and his father managed to escape to the forests, where they hoped to find some partisans. They failed, and after a few days of wandering, they asked their prewar Ukrainian acquaintances, the peasant family of Kondrat and Maria Gladyshko from the nearby village of Zarechie (now Zarichna) to shelter them. The Gladyshkos hid the father and the son in a cellar, which all of them had to enlarge. Finally, in January 1944 the area was liberated by the Red Army, and Mikhail and Iosif emerged from the cellar.
In the same month, Iosif Gorokhovskii was drafted into the Red Army. Mikhail reached the age of 18 in April 1944 and he too was drafted. After a month-long course for mortar gunners at a training camps near Kazan, east of Moscow, Mikhail Gorokhovskii was assigned to the 52nd Guards Rifle Division. With this division, he entered Latvia and took part in the country's capture by the Soviets. In Riga, the capital of Latvia, he participated in heavy street fighting, during which hundreds of soldiers were killed. For his role in the capture of Riga, he was awarded the Order of Glory.
Mikhail Gorokhovskii was wounded three times. His last injury took place near Berlin on May 7, 1945 – one day before Victory Day. He was released from the army, after having been awarded his one military order and a number of medals.Mikhail's elder brother Aron was drafted into the Red Army in 1940 and fought at the front from the first day of the war. He was killed fighting in the North Caucasus in May 1943.
After the war, both father and son returned to Ruzhyn. Iosif Gorokhovskii died in 1952. In 1990 Mikhail Gorokhovskii, with his wife, three children and five grandchildren, immigrated to Israel, where they lived in Natzrat Ilit.