Posthumous awards for Polish mother and son

March 26, 2010 Agencies
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The Jewish Community Council of Victoria will present a Righteous Amongst the Nations Award to a Bunbury brother and sister whose father and grandmother  saved the life of one of their father’s schoolmates.

August Paszkudzki

Leonarda Paszkudzka

Renata Paszkudzka

A still to be named representative of the Fedreal Government will present the awards in the names of  Leonarda Paszkudska and her son August (both deceased).

The Reward will be received on their behalf by August’s son George and daughter Leonarda, both of whom now live in Bunbury, Western Australia.

When August realised that his schoolmate, a young Jewish woman named Renata Stam, was to be deported to the camps he convinced Nazi officials that she was required for housekeeping duties.  Mrs Paszkudska and August then hid Renata in their home in Lebov, Poland from 1942 to 1944.

Renata lived in the Paszkudska’s home, registered as their housekeeper under a different name. Leonarda treated her as a family member without receiving anything in exchange. August used to inform Renata’s father, who had stayed in the ghetto, about her situation until Mr Stam was sent to the concentration camps.  This story had a fairy-tale ending when August and Renata married following the liberation of Poland in late 1944.

In 2004 the Righteous Amongst the Nations committee decided to posthumously award Leonarda and August.  Following August’s death, Renata had migrated to Western Australia in 1989 and died here in 2006.

The award will be presented during the Yom HaShoah commemoration next month.

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