Buś Tomasz

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Story of Rescue - Buś Tomasz

Tomasz Buś was a professional soldier serving in the Polish army. He lived in Mielec together with his family and siblings. He was 25 in 1939. After the failure of the defensive war with Germany, he returned home and started working as a blue-collar worker at a mill.

When the Germans created a ghetto in Mielec in 1941, a friend of Tomasz from the Weissman family ended up in it. Before the war, Tomasz was a frequent guest at their house. From that time onwards, he made use of his employment at the mill to help that family get food. He was discovered and denounced by a neighbour of his under the name of Jarosz. Tomasz was arrested and whipped at a Gestapo post.

In the spring of 1942, the Weissman family was transferred to the labour camp in Bełz. Tomasz managed to find them thanks to his contacts with Germans who came to the mill. He visited Bełz several times and bribed guards into letting him meet with the Weissmans.

Sometime later, some inmates of the camp were moved to Biesiadka near Mielec. Irena Weissman, a sister of Tomasz’s friend, aged 22, was sent there. Buś spent most of his money on organising an escape for Irena. Their plans were carried out in October 1942. Together, they managed to evade and escape German parties trying to hunt them down, often at the very last moment, running away on foot, by bike, in a wagon or by train. On several occasions they had to pay people who threatened to denounce them.

Tomasz brought Irena to his sister Stanisława who lived in a village called Borek but he had to take her away from there soon afterwards when a member of the Navy-Blue Police reported Irena’s presence at Stanisława’s house to the authorities. Because of this, he took Irena to his family house for two weeks where he hid her in the attic. He used that time to dig out an underground hiding place for her at a plot of land owned by Wiktoria Sieroń and adjacent to the one owned by his parents. Irena spent 22 months there, right until August 1944.

Tomasz helped his friends selflessly. He helped the Weissmans, deprived of everything by the Germans, without asking for any reward. His parents, his siblings, and the owner of the plot of land where the underground hiding place was were fully aware that Irena was in hiding there.

After the war, Irena did not find any of her relatives, they were all murdered by the Germans. She married Tomasz. The Yad Vashem Institute awarded the Righteous Among the Nations title to him in 2002.

Bibliography

  • Archiwum Żydowskiego Instytutu Historycznego, Dział odznaczeń Yad Vashem. Dokumentacja sprawy Tomasza Busia, 349/24/2475