Class 6c
24 June 1946

My wartime experiences – the escape over the Bug River

In January 1944, when the German authorities left the factory, Ukrainian bands attacked our houses at 7.00 p.m. We sought shelter in the forest. The defenseless inhabitants fled to the forest. 12 people were thrown into the burning houses and killed. The inhabitants divided into groups consisting of several families walked for eight kilometers in deep snow, as they had to go through the forest to get to the railway station. Railway transports were there. We couldn’t go to the station. The Germans shot at us from the bunkers. We remained in the forest until morning, and at dawn we made our way to the station.

The railway workers welcomed us gladly, gave us breakfast and then led us to the wagon which fit 16 families, who were headed for their home country. The Ukrainians had laid a mine near Kowel, which tore apart the front wheels of the steam locomotive and injured the engine driver. The railway workers fixed the tracks and attached another locomotive. We went to Biała Podlaska and then to Sarnów. Wanting to save us from being deported by the Germans to Prussia, the station master hid us in the Soviet colony. When the train started moving, the angry Germans had to keep going, and we happily stayed in our Homeland.