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Stanislaw DREWK

Stanisław Drewk was born on 20 June 1914 in the village of Rytel in the Chojnice district in Pomerania. His parents, Leon and Franciszka (nee Grzonka), were the owners of an over 100-hectare farm.


After graduating from a four-year general school, he graduated from a three-year vocational school in Chojnice. He then learned the butcher's profession. He lived in the village of Młynki near Chojnice, and pursued boxing training in the City Sports Club "Chojniczanka".

Before the war he did not serve in the Polish Army, because on June 20, 1936. he was given a "C" category (this category meant "capable of service with restrictions").

During the German occupation in 1943 he befriended the Volkslist and as the owner of the III group he was called to the Wehrmacht the same year. September 3, 1943, he joined the 2nd company of the 480 Grenadier Reserve Battalion (2nd Company, Grenadier-Ersatz-Battalion 480), stationed in the village of Slaný in the Czech Republic and Moravian Protectorate. After completing the recruitment course in this unit and being sworn in November 21, 1943, was transferred to the 9th Company of the newly formed 1025 Grenadier Regiment (9th Company, Grenadier-Regiment 1025) stationed in Baumholder. On 15 January 1944, the unit was reformed into the 1057 Grenadier-Regiment 1057) and was incorporated into the 91st Infantry Division. They set off from Germany to the Reims area to France, where in March 1944, they began to transform it into a parachute unit.

On the day of the Allied invasion of Normandy, June 6, 1944, Stanislaw took part in the fighting on the Cotentin Peninsula (Cherbourga region). The 1057 regiment took part in clashes with American paratroopers near the town of La Fiere. On this day, Stanislaw was injured and rushed to a German military hospital. He was evacuated to Le Mans in  the south and on August 8, 1944, he and his friend deserted, hiding in a cabbage field. After the arrival of American troops, they surrendered themselves. Stanislaw had the rank of Obergrenadier at the time.

On October 15, 1944, he was interrogated by the Americans in Prisoner of War Camp No.5. As a Pole, he was transferred to the supervision of the Polish Armed Forces in the West. On 26 November 1944, he was verified by Polish counter-interview and on December 1, 1944. he was accepted into the Polish Army as a senior rifleman.

He did not accept using a pseudonym, serving under his own name the entire time. From the 18th of December 1944 he was on a three-month driving course, and from  February 1, 1945,  on a four-week radio course. On 29 March 1945, he was assigned to the 1st Armoured Division, fighting at the time in the Netherlands and then in Germany. On 23 April 1945, he switched to the 9th Flanders Rifle Battalion of the 1st Armoured Division, with which he served on the front for the last two weeks of the war. During this period, the 1st Armoured Division fought to gain the naval base Wilhelmshaven, ending with its surrender on 5 May 1945.

After the war he was stationed with the Division on German occupation in Lower Saxony. On 3 March 1947, he was promoted to Corporal. On 25 April 1947 at the Demobilization Centre No. 2 in Quakenbrück, he was demobilized, and on May 17, 1947, he returned to Poland - arriving in Szczecin.

He was awarded the Army Medal and commemorative British medals: France and Germany Star and War Medal 1939-1945, as well as the Honorary Badge of the 9th Flanders Battalion.

After the war he worked as a butcher and later qualified to be a miller. He was repeatedly harassed by the communist authorities; however he never made any deals with them.

Corporal Stanisław Drewk died on June 23, 1984, at the age of 70. He was married to Leokadia (nee Lepak), with whom he had seven children: Sophie, Roman, Jolanta, Lucja, Jadwiga, Joseph and Maryla.

Source: Posted by grandson Rafal Sowinski on First Armoured Division FB page

Copyright: Drewk family

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