The Dziedzic Family

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Story of Rescue - The Dziedzic Family

 Before the war, the Dziedzic and Zandberg families were each other's closest neighbours in the Lublin region village of Bystrzyca. In October, 1942, all the Jews in the area were ordered to relocate. “They went on their own, without a German escort”, remembers Czesław Dziedzic, the eldest son of Józef and Maria. “Our mother said ‘they ought to turn back, they are going to their death.’ And our father noticed that he hadn't seen Lejzor. ‘Lejzor may still be alive,’ Dad said.”

Indeed, Lejzor, the twenty-year-old Zandberg son, had escaped the group that was being displaced. Soon, he turned up on the Dziedzic doorstep asking for shelter. The whole family helped Lejzor survive in their attic: Maria washed his clothes and cooked his meals, the children– Czesław, seventeen, and Stefcia, ten– brought food and schoolbooks to the attic and Józef bought him newspapers and tobacco. Everyone cheered him on through the hard times. “He was down a lot; his family was gone. He would waver and want to come out of hiding,” reports Czesław, “but Dad would say, ‘Stay – you've already made it this far.’

Lejzor would occasionally leave the Dziedzic farm to hide with two other families in the area. “None of the neighbours knew we were harbouring him,” Czesław recalls. “And Lejzor, he would never tell us where else he had stayed.” Lejzor Zandberg survived the occupation, often visiting Józef Dziedzic. He has been exchanging letters with the Dziedzic children and grandchildren.

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Bibliography

  • Gutman Israel red. nacz., Księga Sprawiedliwych wśród Narodów Świata, Ratujący Żydów podczas Holocaustu, Kraków 2009
  • Kołacz Grzegorz Schnepf Zuzanna, Interview with Czesław Dziedzic, a son of Józef and Maria Dziedzic, 18.08.2007