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markmblogier 1 | 2
6 Jul 2011 #1

I am coming to Bedzin July 25th and am hoping to meet the women who hid my aunt, a Jewish woman, and her young son during World War II.

After the war, my aunt maintained contact with them through the mail. I am not sure if they have since died but I know that there was a daughter who married and had children.

I would like the opportunity to thank these kind souls for having saved my aunt's life.

The names I have are Halina (Ligia) Cyganek al. Zwyciestwa 18/88 Bedzin 42-500; Kazimierz Gruszczynski Drierzynskiego 19/2 Bedzin 42-500. The daughter is Matgarzata Chmura ul. Al Zwyciestwa 18/88 Bedzin 42-500.

Any help you can offer would be greatly appreciated. I seem unable to register to log on, so you can email me at mblogier@yahoo

Thank you,


I am traveling to Będzin on July 24th and am looking for the "righteous Christians" who hid my (Jewish) aunt and her young son during all of World War II.

After the war, my aunt corresponded regularly with these people. My aunt has since died. I would like to thank these people for the risks they took and for the courage they showed and thank them for saving my aunt's life.

The addresses I have are:

Halina (Ligia) Cyganek and her daughter, Matgarzata Chmura, ul. Al. Zwycięstwa 18/88 42-500 Będzin and

Kazimierz Gruszczynski Al. Drierzynskiego 19 42-500 Będzin

I tried using the internet but wasn't successful. Could someone kindly look them up in a Polish telephone book or suggest another way that I might be able to find them?

Needless to say, coming to Poland for the first time is very emotional for me. Despite having been born and raised in the USA, I have always felt like a piece of me has been missing. I am looking forward to walking the same streets that my father walked. Being able to have a connection to these amazing, brave people or their descendents who saved my family's life would mean so much to me.

Thank you for any assistance you can offer.

joepilsudski 26 | 1,389
7 Jul 2011 #2
I cannot offer any assistance except to say if you go there you will find them or friends of theirs...Best of luck to you, you will find something good on your journey to bring back with you.
ShawnH 8 | 1,508
7 Jul 2011 #3

Małgorzata. The ł is different from the t. The ł is more like the sound made by a w in English. Not sure if your searches would have been for Małgorzata or Matgarzata....

Good luck in your search!
wildrover 98 | 4,451
7 Jul 2011 #4
Thank you for any assistance you can offer.

I am afraid i can,t help you much with your search , but i do wish you luck with it , and hope you can find what you seek....
7 Jul 2011 #5
It is not ul. Al. Zwycięstwa try this: 42-500 Będzin, ul. Zwycięstwa 18/88

Here is the list for the streetsów_pocztowych_w_Polsce/Duże_miasta/Będzin

Hope it helps, you could also contact a TV station, they may be interested in your story.
wildrover 98 | 4,451
7 Jul 2011 #6
Hope it helps, you could also contact a TV station, they may be interested in your story.

Thats a great idea....

Write a brief account of your story , i am sure one of the nice peeps on here will translate it into Polish for you , then send it to radio , tv and newspapers in Poland...get it on the internet too...

Somebody somewhere is going to know these folks you are looking for....
PennBoy 76 | 2,437
7 Jul 2011 #7
ul. Al. Zwycięstwa

Al. Drierzynskiego

If the street names are from pre-war or communist times they are probably different now. Street names changed in 1993.
7 Jul 2011 #8
ul. Zwycięstwa 18/88 - still exists I have just found the building on google maps, the area looks like there has been a lot of construction, a carrefour has been built and shopping center.

Al. Drierzynskiego 19 42-500 Będzin - I am coming up a blank with.
skysoulmate 14 | 1,297
7 Jul 2011 #9
What a great idea! I agree with Wildrover that a letter in Polish might help in case you run into people who speak little or no English (pretty common with older folks).

I'd love to read about your experiences, hope you'll share them with us.

Good luck to you!

Nesi'ah tovah (no, I don't speak Hebrew :)

PS. Contacting a radio or a tv station sounds like a good idea too, they might be able to do some research for you.

Al. Drierzynskiego 19 42-500 Będzin - I am coming up a blank with.

Sounds like a street named after the KGB (NKVD) founder Felix Dzierzynski?

If that's the case I sure hope that with the fall of communism all streets named after him have been renamed. Soviet War-Crimes Alley would be a good new name. ...but I'm digressing. Sorry.
wildrover 98 | 4,451
7 Jul 2011 #10
If that's the case I sure hope that with the fall of communism all streets named after him have been renamed.

Yep...for sure that sign would have been ripped off the walls as soon as the Russians pulled out of Poland....
JonnyM 11 | 2,620
7 Jul 2011 #11
The Polish Association of Righteous anong the Nations should have up to date contact details if they are still living.

The organisation is called: Polskie Towarzystwo Sprawiedliwych Wśród Narodów Świata

Here's a link to their website with contact details. Remember that most of them are very old so a reply to a query in English might not come back immediately - their office isn't open every day:
OP markmblogier 1 | 2
7 Jul 2011 #12
Thanks to all of you who responded with suggestions for how I might be able to contact the "Righteous Christians" who hid my aunt and her son during World War II.

I will be coming to Bedzin July 24th (will actually be in Krakow from 24/7 until 29/7). Some of you suggested contacting a TV, radio or internet and having the story translated into Polish. If any of you can help with specifics, I would greatly appreciate it.

Briefly, this is my aunt's story:

My aunt, Esterka "Edzi" Blogier Wekselman was one of 5 children in an observant Jewish family in Bedzin. Her father, an upholsterer, died in his 50's of a heart attack. The family was poor and Esterka became a milliner's apprentice at a shop in Katowice. She became friends with one of the Polish Catholic girls who worked in the shop (I assume that was Halina "Ligia" Cyganek but am not certain).

Esterka married and had a son named Mark (he survived the war but tragically died of cancer at the age of 17 after they immigrated to the USA. I am named for him----it is a Jewish custom to name babies after someone who has died). Somehow (I do not know the details), Esterka made arrangements for her son Mark to hide with Ligia during the war. By this point Esterka was in the Bedzin Ghetto.

My aunt told me the story of being discovered hiding in a basement with others in the Ghetto by a Nazi and being led out by the Nazi. My aunt intentionally was at the end of the line and she decided that she had nothing to lose and ran away. She often wondered why the Nazi didn't shoot her. My aunt went to the house where her son was and this family took her in. She and Mark stayed together until the end of the war.

Esterka's husband and my father managed to stay together in Oświęcim Concentration Camp and were liberated from Dachau Concentration Camp (they were in other ones as well). My father traveled to Będzin and found my aunt and her son. All of their other siblings and their mother had perished. The smaller reunited family stayed in Munich, Germany, until they were able to immigrate to the USA in 1949.

I always remember my aunt sending packages to "her saviors" in Poland and receiving letters. Over the years, photos of weddings (Matgosia and Yarek Chmura ----I think this is Halina's daughter), pictures of babies and older children (David, Dariusz, Krzysztof), and of a funeral crossed the ocean. I was always extremely close to my aunt (after all I was a "replacement child" for her son which incidentally is a legacy that we adult children of Holocaust survivors deal with) and used to study these pictures and the letter despite not being able to read Polish.

Despite having been born and raised in the US, I have always felt that a part of me was missing and was somewhere in Poland (and Lithuania where my mother came from). That my aunt continued to keep her relationship alive with the people that saved her life only reinforced this feeling. While I don't know where my family lived in Będzin (both my father and aunt are dead), it will be meaningful to walk the streets of the town and see the castle (I did hear about this from my aunt). Being able to meet the descendants of my aunt's saviours and being able to thank them would be a dream come true.

Any assistance you can offer would be greatly appreciated.
Bartolome 2 | 1,085
7 Jul 2011 #13
Wikipedia says Dzierżyńskiego is now Modrzejowska.
skysoulmate 14 | 1,297
7 Jul 2011 #14
Over the years, photos of weddings (Matgosia and Yarek Chmura ----

Just two name spelling corrections.

Matgosia - it's Małgosia (or Małgorzata) ( The letter looks like an L with a slash NOT a T, and is pronounced like the english W - if Whiskey was spelled in Polish it'd be £yski :)

Yarek - it's Jarek (or Jarosław)
OP markmblogier 1 | 2
8 Jul 2011 #15
Thank you for clarifying that. I have resent the letter with the correct address. I appreciate your help!

Bambino - | 1
13 Nov 2012 #16
[Moved from]: Cyganek, Gruszczynski, Chura - Looking to contact people in Będzin

Merged: looking for Polish man from Bedzin-about age 70.

You are a Polish man about 70 years old from the Bedzin/Sosnowiec area of Zaglebie. You were adopted during the war.
You or your children have red hair. Your uncle searches for you but he is old. Hurry, time is being lost. Maybe you are from the Chicago or New York area but you have looked for us. We wait and we search.
16 Mar 2016 #17

Hi- I am looking for the Christian family that hid my grandmother, Elizabeth Trachman during the Holocaust, when she was 15 months old. They hid her from 1942 (sometime around August) till 1945, she was 4 years old. This family lived near Brzozow, Poland. If you know of this family or other Christian families that hid Jews near/in Brzozow please let me know.

- if anyone has heard of the Trachman family please let me know- they Benzion Trachman owned a Brandy factory in Brzozow, Poland.

Home / Genealogy / LOOKING FOR "RIGHTEOUS CHRISTIANS" IN POLAND - BEDZIN, BRZOZOW / Cyganek, Gruszczynski, Chura
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