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Home » The Shoah » Heroes » Maria & Vladislav Keiovski

Maria & Vladislav Keiovski

On Rosh Hashanah 5703 (September 11, 1942), during the Aktion in the Stolin ghetto, in the Polesie district, the Germans left a number of Jews and their families behind to run the local hospital. The Jews—Dr. Hersh Rotter (later Henry Reed), his wife, Ewa and their three-year-old son, Aleksander, Dr. Marian Poznanski, and his wife, Gina, Dr. Ernberg, a veterinarian, and his wife, Erna, and two Jewish nurses—were housed in the service quarters inside the hospital precinct. Since it was clear that sooner or later they would share the fate of the Jews in the ghetto, they began to plan their escape. Dr. Rotter turned to his friend, Franciszek Smorczewski [Франциск Сморцевский], the local priest, who encouraged him to escape, supplied his wife with a Christian birth certificate, and began enlisting the help of local Poles to help the Jews in the hospital escape. The escape was planned for November 26, 1942. On the morning of that fateful day, a Polish girl warned the group that an SS detachment had arrived in Stolin. Toward evening, the Rotters escaped from the hospital to the home of a local Polish doctor, where Maria Keiovski [Мария Кийовски], the wife of Vladislav Keiovski [Владислав Кийовски], the forester, was waiting for them in a horse-drawn wagon. Keiovski took them to her home in the forest, where they hid for a few days, until her husband accompanied them to Stepan and Agafya Mozol, where the Jewish refugees stayed until February 1943, at which time they joined the partisans. The other Jews who were left in the hospital were smuggled out in a similar fashion and found their way to partisan units in the forests. After the war, the survivors immigrated to the United States, while the Keiovskis moved to an area within Poland’s postwar borders.

On May 23, 1979, Yad Vashem recognized Maria and Vladislav Keiovski as Righteous Among the Nations.

Compiled by and Copyright © 2020 Joshua S. Perlman and Adina Lipsitz
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Updated 20 December, 2020

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