This memoir was written by Hania (neé Teifeld) Shane over a period of years and dictated to her niece, Aida (neé Guyer) Cutler, between 2000 and 2002, in Detroit. Hania died in 2002. Aida is the daughter of Hania’s sister, Zelda, who is mentioned in the memoir, but who had already emigrated to Argentina when the Second World War began. Tragically, the two sisters never saw each other after the War.
Hania also wrote a short article that appears in Yiddish in the Gombin Yizkor book, “De ShulBrent ” (The Synagogue is Burning), page 115. (1)
Hania did not want this memoir published until after her death because it reveals the identity of her Polish Gentile “boyfriend” from Gombin, with whom she spent a significant part of the War and who helped her and other Jews survive the Holocaust. He is identified, however, in the “Wilhelm Bachner Story” as Tadeusz (Tadek) Kazaniecki. The book has numerous descriptions of his important role as a courageous and loyal courier and contact. He disappeared and was presumably killed by the Nazis. We honor his memory as one of the many unrecognized “Righteous” who risked all and gave their own lives to save Jews!
This is truly Hania’s story. May her memory, and the memory of all of those, Polish Jews and ‘just’ Christians alike, mentioned by her, be for a blessing. We are incredibly fortunate that this memoir itself has survived to become part of our Gombin legacy.
Featured in B’nai Gombin Issue #36.