Budnik Piotr

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Story of Rescue - Budnik Piotr

Piotr Budnik spent the Nazi occupation in Kaczanówka, a village near Tarnopol. In 1942, he led three children from the Hejlarch family out of the ghetto in Tarnopol: Adela, Estera and Zeewa. He built them a shelter and looked after them until the end of the World War II. 

Piotr Budnik, with his parents, lived in the village of Kaczanowska, in the former Tarnopol Province. Not far from his farm lived the Jewish Helrajch family.

During the War, in Tarnopol itself – firstly occupied by the USSR and then, in 1941, occupied by the Germans – the Nazis established a ghetto for the Jewish inhabitants and also transported Jews from the surrounding areas there.  A year later, from August to November, they set about liquidating it and deported the remaining Jews to the Bełżec death camp.

At that time, Piotr managed to extract three Helrajch children - Adela, Estera and Zeew (accorong to Gutma "Wolf"). He built them a shelter on his farm and, through the rest of the War (18 months), he cared for them. It was extremely difficult for Budnik as he needed had to hide the children's presence from his own parents - elderly people who had not agreed to hide the Jews. When Zeew (Wolf) and Estera fell ill with typhus, he prepared a special hiding-place in the forest for them and there he looked after them. As a result, he also was infected and fell ill.

All of them - Piotr and the children - survived the War. Piotr married Adela and, together, they left for Israel.

Bibliography

  • Tarnopol - historia
  • Gutman Israel red. nacz., Księga Sprawiedliwych wśród Narodów Świata, Ratujący Żydów podczas Holocaustu, Kraków 2009
  • Grynberg Michał, Księga Sprawiedliwych, Warszawa 1993

    The lexicon includes the stories of Poles honoured with the title of Righteous Among the Nations in the years 1963-1989. The list of entries is preceded by a preface by Icchak Arad and Chaim CheferThe Righteous of the World.