The Diehl Family

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Story of Rescue - The Diehl Family

During the War, retired engineer Gustaw Diehl, with his wife Kazimiera and four children, lived on the Jasieniec estate, near the Treblinka extermination camp. In 1942, while in Warsaw, he met Estera Geist, his niece’s schoolmate and, an escapee from the ghetto. He agreed to hide her. The fair-haired girl settled into Jasieniec as a relative, Maria Borowska, and looked after the younger Diehl children.

One day, when she was arrested by Ukrainian policemen and put into a nearby work camp, Gustaw wasted no time in assuring the guards of her Aryan origins. The girl was freed. ”Kazimiera and Maria, herself, described this incident as a miracle. It truly was in that there was really no ongoing harm done”, wrote Maria Siekierska, a relative of the Diehls’, in her testimony to the Yad Vashem Institute.

Estera survived until her liberation in the summer of 1944. After the War, she settled in Argentina.

The couple also helped other escapees from the camps who rested on the grounds of the farm, finding nourishment from the food they received there.

The story is published courtesy of the Muzeum Walki i Męczeństwa „Treblinka” – The Treblinka Museum of Struggle and Martyrdom.  

Other Stories of Rescue in the Area

Bibliography

  • Gutman Israel red. nacz., Księga Sprawiedliwych wśród Narodów Świata, Ratujący Żydów podczas Holocaustu, Kraków 2009
  • Archiwum Żydowskiego Instytutu Historycznego, 349, 2390