Wednesday, May 13, 2015
Researching Decades Too Late
Updated January 9, 2017
For decades I purposely avoided the dozens of scattered and misplaced documents about my Dad's history and captivity that spanned over 50 years. Papers from the old country, documentation that my sister Susanna obtained some 12 years ago, data I randomly obtained in addition to written and oral family memories. Sure I perused them once or twice, and wow, some interesting stuff that has been laying in a pile for many decades. But I knew once I got into them and focused, I would get sucked into that personal historical abyss and I did, big time.
After months and now years of research that generated reams of prints, maps, data and facts, I've only taken a many steps forward and now need to come up to reflect. I am going to post what I have discovered to this point in my amateur analysis of the historical record and present a story and a time-line based on his WWII POW documents and the established historical record of Polish WWII battles. I need to understand and relate the story of my Dad's capture by the Russian Army then the captivity by the German army. These events are only one generation removed from today and must be learned, understood and heeded. Those that don't learn, understand and heed history are doomed to repeat it. And I'm sure no one would want to repeat this journey.
Damn, It would have been so much easier to ask him while he was alive but I was a dumb rebellious kid not realizing or appreciating the sacrifices he made, the history he could tell. Sure we heard some general anecdotal comments from him that we embellished or made fun of or both, not appreciating what horrendous ordeals he really went through and by the grace of God survived with death and carnage all around him.
So why try to understand his ordeal now? This is a personal redemption quest for me and tribute to a ordinary man that it turns out was really extraordinary. In addition,there is love, pride, appreciation, family history, mortality and hopefully a story that will survive forever online for generations to come. He deserves the story be told as well as all Polish soldiers and civilians as part of the invasion and defense of Poland.
Now years after the initial publication of this blog, I continue to unearth shreds of evidence to complete Dad's story. This is updated/edited regularily, I am data driven for personal accuracy so it will never be "right "for me. In spite of this I hope the reader can find it can be a good read.
If you are bored by endless dates, foreign locations and analysis, I ask you read the 1st two segments and last 3 segments for the human side of this story.
Note there are 15 segments, if viewing via Facebook, Ipad and other e-devices require the reader to select "Older Posts" or the Next arrow to see segments beyond #6 and #12. These last 9 posts close the loop!