Rescuers of Jews

Daugevičienė Zosė

Rozalija DAUGEVIČIENĖ (1885–1971)
Jonas DAUGEVIČIUS (1911–1998)
Zosė DAUGEVIČIENĖ (1913–1995)
Vladas DAUGEVIČIUS (1913–1953)
Pranas DAUGEVIČIUS (1925–1996)

February 1943, Veisiejai pharmacist Saulius Kuklianskis and his children – Moshe, Ana and Samuelis – escaped from the liquidated Grodno Ghetto and returned to Lithuania, hoping to find refuge in the vicinity of their hometown of Veisiejai. Thus, a new stage of their hiding began – a year and a half period of life in the forests.
Vladas Daugevicius was the first person met by the fugitives after crossing the Nemunas River to the Lithuanian village of Sventijanskas.

From the memoirs of Moshe Kuklianskis:

<...> He sincerely said he was sorry for what has happen to the Jews and that he wanted to help us. He asked us to wait and brought us some pork and bread. Seeing us barely walking he told us not to go anywhere far as there were plenty of places to hide and people where benevolent living far from the administrative centre. He advised us to look for some place nearby and offered us to spend a night in his stables close to his horses. We, of course, agreed joyfully.
In the morning, we were treated to a bucket of warm milk and noodle soup and visited by the entire grown-up and nice Daugevičius family: mother Rozalija, sons Jonas, Vladas (whom we already knew) and Pranas, and a daughter Janė. Jonas was already married to a woman named Zosė and was the head of the entire big family. Upon seeing us, Rozalija got very excited, burst into tears and even had to be consoled. Jonas told us that they were willing to help us, but had no idea how to arrange the assistance. He offered us to hide in their potato pit for a few days while they made the plans. We, of course, agreed. <...>

Shortly, the brothers Jonas and Vladas Daugevičius constructed the first hideout in the forest for the fugitives – a carefully camouflaged pit. They showed the family there, taught them the rules of conspiracy, and afterwards paid them regular visits bringing food. Later, the Kuklianskis family was also aided by the residents of other nearby villages of Bugieda, Macevičiai and Vainiūnai, but the Daugevičius family were the first to offer vital help to the Kuklianskis family after their return to Lithuania from Grodno in February 1943 and they continued to protect Saulius Kuklianskis and his children – Moshe, Ana and Samuelis – hiding in the forest pits until the liberation in the summer of 1944.

Moshe Kuklianskis remembers:

<...> I used to visit Daugevičius family house at night having some deal or searching for advice and meeting. They used to visit us rather often too, always offering advise or help. They were the most dignified people. Without their initial help in that environment and later consistent help throughout the entire period of hiding, we would have probably perished. <...>

In 2008, Rozalija Daugevičienė, Janina Daugevičiūtė-Ruoškienė, Jonas Daugevičius, Zosė Daugevičienė, Vladas Daugevičius and Pranas Daugevičius were titled the Righteous Among the Nations.
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