A Survivor's appeal- prof.Marian Grynberg meets with students

HK, 13th March 2009
Professor Marian Grynberg met with students at the Christian Theological Academy in Warsaw on March 12th 2009. Professor Grynberg wanted to tell the students and staff of the Academy the story of his family and to ask them  to remember the name of Klara Neugebauer, the woman who saved them during the war. Grynberg is not sure of the spelling of the last name to this day. He only knows she lived in Izabelin and was a member of the Protestant church.

<> the professor tells his large audience at the auditorium. They managed to escape in the mid-1942. Marian Grynberg was 2 years old. From that time they were in hiding. After the fall of the Warsaw Uprising they were told they shouldn't leave the city as the rest of Varsovians, because there were people who were denouncing Jews to the Nazis standing just outside the city.

The family went to Izabelin, today a luxurious neighborhood, then a mere village. They went from house to house and under the name Jastrzębski Marian Grynberg's father asked for shelter. The search was very exhausting, no one had room for 2 cold-stricken adults and a four-year old boy.

Klara Neugebauer agreed to keep the family in her garage. Though there was a stove in the garage, the winter of 1944/45 was so harsh they had to take ice of the door with an axe in order to open it.
The Jastrzębski-Grynbergs stayed at Klara Neugebauer's to January 1945.

One day, the professor says, Klara told my father that he looks just like this “Jew from Wola (a neighborhood), a doctor, but he was a cultivated man, not a red-neck like you”. The Grynberg's were mortified, but they had nowhere else to go, so they had to stay in the garage, risking denounciation. When they were leaving Klara's house, she said she recognized him the first day, because before the war her husband, a carpenter was dr. Grynberg's patient. What she said about the “red neck” was supposed to calm them down, to ensure them that she hadn't recognized them as Jews.

The Grynbergs stayed in touch with Klara Neugebauer until her death in 1948 or 49. After the parents died Grynberg wanted to find Klara Neugebauer having very scarce information about her. The search was futile.

During the meeting the professor asked the students and the staff of the Christian Theological Academy to remember the name of Klara Neugebauer and to spread the word of her heroism.

Professor Grynberg is a lecturer at the Institute of Experimental Physics at the Warsaw University, in years 1992-2005 he was the vice-president of the Foundation for Polish Science.