Trees of Irena Sendler and Jan Karski in the Garden of the Righteous

Maria Zawadzka, 16 November 2016
In the last years of the 20th century in Padua was founded the Garden of the Righteous of the World. This project is supposed to commemorate the people who risked their own lives to save others – condemned to extermination – among them Bosnians, Armenians, Jews and Rwandans.

The name of the project is a clear reference to the title “Righteous Among the Nations” awarded by the Yad Vashem Institute.

The creators of the Garden – the authorities of Padua – want to commemorate such conducts by planting trees which are supposed to become living monuments to the heroes.

On October 17th, 2010 in Padua the trees of Irena Sendler and Jan Jarski were planted. The first one was planted by the daughter of the Polish Righteous Janina Zgrzembska, and the second, devoted to Jan Karski – by the chairman of the Jan Karski Association , Bogdan Białek. 

During the Second World War Jan Karski was the emissary of the Polish Underground State. He transmitted information about the Holocaust to the Allies. He managed to get into the Warsaw Ghetto twice. He also reached the transit camp in Izbica. He was an eyewitness of the extermination of the Jews.

In 1982 Jan Karski was honored with the title of the Righteous Among the Nations and in 1995 with the Order of the White Eagle. He was nominated to the Nobel Peace Prize. He died on July 13th, 2000 in Washington. More about Jan Karski on the Polish Righteous”  portal.

Irena Sendler, Righteous Among the Nations, activist of the underground Council to Aid Jews “Żegota”, working in the Welfare Assistance Department of the Warsaw Administration, saved 2,500 children during the Second World War.

The children she helped rescue were brought out from the Warsaw ghetto onto the so-called Aryan Side. They received false papers and were placed in Polish orders, orphanages and families.

Irena Sendler was awarded with the title of the Righteous Among the Nations in 1965. In 2007 the Righteous was nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize. She passed away on May 12, 2008 in Warsaw, at the age of 98.