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Wroclaw, Poland - 97 Year Polish WWII Saviours Of Jews Honoured

Published on: October 25, 2013 10:15 AM
By: PAP
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 Bronislawa Golonka (C) with survivor Max Halpern (R) and family members after receiving the Righteous Among the Nations Award in her home in Wroclaw, Poland, 25 October 2013. Mrs Golonka and her late husband Jan, saved the Jewish family of Max Halpern during World War II. The award is a supreme distinction given by the State of Israel, to honour individuals who have come to the aid of jews during WWII.  EPA/MACIEJ KULCZYNSKI Bronislawa Golonka (C) with survivor Max Halpern (R) and family members after receiving the Righteous Among the Nations Award in her home in Wroclaw, Poland, 25 October 2013. Mrs Golonka and her late husband Jan, saved the Jewish family of Max Halpern during World War II. The award is a supreme distinction given by the State of Israel, to honour individuals who have come to the aid of jews during WWII.  EPA/MACIEJ KULCZYNSKI

Wroclaw, Poland - A 97-year-old Polish woman and her late husband were honoured by Israel’s Yad Vashem Institute on Friday as ‘righteous gentiles.

Bronislawa Golonka and her husband Jan provided shelter to a five-person Jewish family on a farm near Bochnia, southern Poland, during the German occupation of Poland.

Max Halpern, one of the children saved by the couple, spent many years searching for the Golonka family. He and family members travelled from Israel to the city of Wroclaw, south west Poland, to be reunited with his wartime saviour.

Halpern recalled how the Golonka family created a special hiding place on their farm. “They dug a hole in a barn, and covered it with planks and we stayed there for about seven to eight months until the Red Army came,” he remembered. “They were a very noble family,” he said. According to laws laid down by the Nazi German regime, those who aided Jews could be summarily executed along with their immediate family.

A second family that helped the Halperns during the war was honoured by Yad Vashem in 1989.

 Bronislawa Golonka (L) with survivor Max Halpern (R) after receiving the Righteous Among the Nations Award in her home in Wroclaw, Poland, 25 October 2013. Mrs Golonka and her late husband Jan, saved the Jewish family of Max Halpern during World War II. The award is a supreme distinction given by the State of Israel, to honour individuals who have come to the aid of jews during WWII.  EPA/MACIEJ KULCZYNSKI Bronislawa Golonka (L) with survivor Max Halpern (R) after receiving the Righteous Among the Nations Award in her home in Wroclaw, Poland, 25 October 2013. Mrs Golonka and her late husband Jan, saved the Jewish family of Max Halpern during World War II. The award is a supreme distinction given by the State of Israel, to honour individuals who have come to the aid of jews during WWII.  EPA/MACIEJ KULCZYNSKI

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 Oct 25, 2013 at 01:57 PM Anonymous Says:

Everytime I read a story like this, I always find myself asking the same question. Would I as an orthodox Jew have hidden any family (including a jewish one) knowing that if I was discovered my entire family would be executed? The truth is I DON'T KNOW. I would appreciate some feedback from your readers.

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