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Translation of parts of an interview by Prof. Patalas

I was born November 28, 1910, on a farm near the town of Krasolow in Wolyn province, the youngest of three brothers. My father died in the spring of 1916, and before that, my brother was called up to serve in the Tsarist army. Her served for two years, then settled in the newly-formed Poland, while my mother, my other brother, and I remained in the USSR. In 1923 we illegally crossed the border and went to live with him in Wolyn.



In August 1939, I was mobilized and had to report to the 12th Armoured Battalion un Luck. On September 18, we crossed the Romanian border at Kuty. We were disarmed and taken to an internment camp. Soon after, the Polish commanders received orders to begin organizing escapes, first of the pilots, then armoured personnel, then the others. When I escaped to the Yugoslav border, we learned that the Italians had taken sides with the Germans, so it was no longer safe to travel to Marseille. So our passports were changed to Beirut. We reached Beirut on June 4, 1940.


I was assigned to reconnaissance in the motorcycle squadron of the 3rd Carpathian Rifle Brigade. When the French surrendered to the Germans in Syria, they allowed us to leave for Palestine. After a few days, we reached the British camp near Tel Aviv. I later fought in the battle of Tobruk in Northern Africa. I eventually found my way to Qizil Ribat in Iraq. Here we trained reinforcements for the Krechowiecki Lancers Regiment – most of whom had come from Siberia.



Piotr fought in the Italian Campaign, then emigrated to Canada on a two-year work contract. When the contract was concluded, he settled in Winnipeg and married Jozefa.


Piotr passed away in Winnipeg before he could complete his memoir.

Copyright: Polanski family

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