Stefania Podgorska Burzminski Poland
Przemysl, Poland… 1942 – Stefania and her family had moved to Przemysl and found work with a Jewish woman, Mrs. Diamant, who had four sons, including one named Joe. Things were getting worse for the Jews; first they had to wear the Star of David, then they were put into the ghetto. Stefania would sneak into the ghetto to bring her friends food.
Stefania’s mother and brother were taken to Germany to work, leaving her six-year-old sister, Helena, alone, so her sister came to live with her in Przemysl. The Diamants and two of the sons were deported. One of the sons, Joe, jumped from the train and made his way back to Stefania’s apartment. Stefania hid him. Rather than risk Stefania’s life, Joe returned to the ghetto.
At Joe’s suggestion, Stefania found a bigger apartment enabling her to hide Joe and several other Jews. After several weeks, Stefania and her sister were hiding 13 Jews.
The Germans set up a hospital across the way from Stefania’s apartment and started taking over apartments in the area. The SS moved into one of her two rooms. They stayed for seven months with 13 Jews living over their heads.
After the war, Stefania and Joe were married. They lived in Israel for a while and then immigrated to the United States. Joe died years ago.
Stefania Podgorska Burzminski is in her 90s and lives in California. Helena Podgorska is in her 80s and lives in Wroclaw, Poland.