Vale Janina Mazur (1921–2021)

Redakcja/Editorial staff, English translation: Andrew Rajcher 16 September 2021
With great sadness, we learned of the passing of Janina Mazur (1921–2021), the oldest Polish women with the title of Righteous Among the Nations (2002). In 2008, she was honoured, by the President of Poland, with the Commander’s Cross of the Order of Polonia Restituta. She passed away at the age of 1009. In saying farewell to her, we recall the story of her family – parents Józef and Władysława Fortuński and her sister Lidia – who, during the Holocaust, helped the Jewish Bergier family.

“A neighbour came, She’d had an argument with the Bergiers’ daughter over something. After she left, Mrs Bergier says, ‘She will betray us.’ Two weeks passed and the Gestapo came. Mr Bergier took out some coins and gave it to them. They announced that they would come the following week and he gave them money for a second time. They ordered him to prepare more, but Mr Bergier said that he had no more. The Gestapo man punched him in the face. When he came a third time, the Bergier family  had gone. My mother and I were also not there, so they beat my father and kicked my sister. It was lucky that they didn’t kill them”, Janina Mazur recalled.

During the German occupation, Janina Mazur, together with her parents, Józef and Władysława Fortuński, and her sister Lidia, extended help to Jews in Warsaw.

In recognition of the help given to the Bergier family during the Holocaust, on 11th September 2002, the Fortuński family was honoured, by the Yad Vashem Institute in Jerusalem, with the title of Righteous Among the Nations. In 2008, Janina Mazur was also honoured with the Commander's Cross of the Order of Polonia Restituta, presented to her by the President of the Republic of Poland.

» Read: Janina Mazur’s Story

Janina Mazur passed away in September 2021 at the age of 100. She was the oldest living Polish women with the title of Righteous Among the Nations.