The Niedziela Family

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Story of Rescue - The Niedziela Family

The Niedzielas lived in Markuszowa near Strzyżów in the Podkarpacie region. The local forests served as hideouts for a number of Jewish fugitives from the Frysztak ghetto, which included the Weitz and Schmidt families. They lived in the woods until the winter of 1942. During that time, Eugeniusz would help them prepare their shelters and bring them food. When the Germans organized a search, the fugitives looked for shelter in local farmsteads. They approached the Niedzielas and were taken in by the couple. They hid in the barn and the stable, and during the winter, in the pigsty. There were a total of ten people who were sheltered: Herman and Chuma Weitz and their two children, Gola and Moniek, Mojżesz and Helena Weitz and their two children, Rose and Tobi, and Sara Schmidt with her husband Salomon, who before the war, was the owner of a textile warehouse in Frysztak. A neighbour denounced them in the summer of 1943, and several soldiers and Blue Policemen came to the Niedzielas' house.

“At the time of my arrest, the police had carried out three careful searches of the farmstead, but they did not find the Jews, as my son had warned them of the approaching policemen,” Eugeniusz recalles.

Suspected of aiding Jews, he was sentenced to a labour camp in Szebnie near Jasło. His wife, Waleria, and mother, Teofila, continued to help the Jews remaining in Markuszowa. The ones who were rescued, survived the war and emigrated to the US.

Bibliography

  • Gutman Israel red. nacz., Księga Sprawiedliwych wśród Narodów Świata, Ratujący Żydów podczas Holocaustu, Kraków 2009