Oral History

Mieczyslaw Madejski describes battle during the Warsaw Polish uprising

Mieczyslaw and his family were not Jewish. When Germany invaded Poland, Mieczyslaw was working for an organization formed for self-defense against German bombings. Later, he worked for the Polish underground group ZWZ (Zwiazek Walki Zbrojnej; Union for Armed Struggle), which became the AK (Armia Krajowa; Home Army). In 1943, he was conscripted for forced labor at a BMW plant in Warsaw. He escaped, and participated in the Warsaw Polish uprising in August 1944. After the uprising, he left Warsaw and went into hiding.

Transcript

Then are the SS going to attack. When we see they prepare for attack, then we start because they was waiting, you know, they was not ready for fighting. And we just come and we start fighting with these people, we probably give him a very hard time because this was on the cemetery. We go the cemetery, to the Powazki Cmentarz because on the, uh, on the north side was a Jewish cemetery, and this was a Catholic cemetery. We go to the cemetery on the northern side and we start fighting very strong with these people and this time I was wounded. Uh, a friend of mine was killed and I was wounded. When I was wounded I asked to my friend, because I was wounded, to drive back immediately, uh, lost, you know, uh, cannot stay on this late that I told to my friend, "Give me more grenades, hand grenades, and leave me alone. You go, run away, and I will stay here, and I be waiting for this German, you know, with the hand grenade 'cause, you know, I will be fight as long as I can." They thought, "Oh, no, no, no, no. We was together so many times before the uprising. We have together so hard times," they, no, they grabbed me and thought, "You, no, you will not stay," and they helped me to walk back to the school. And from this school I come to the school, the friends of mine see this I wounded, they give me the first help and then grabbed me off during the ghetto because the ghetto was no more German, they, uh, grabbed me during the ghetto in the ambulance, because we have ambulance, during the fighting we find everything: we have car, we have tanks, and we have ambulance. They keep me, they put me in the ambulance and go with this ambulance through ghetto, through the old town, to the old town to the hospital. Was a hospital for the mental people hospital, but still was the hospital, and they dropped me off.


  • US Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection
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