Rescuers of Jews

Elijošaitis Bronius

Ona ELIJOŠAITENĖ Pranas ELIJOŠAITIS and their son Bronius ELIJOŠAITIS When the Germans occupied Kaunas, Jocheved Čartokaitė was locked in the ghetto. On the first occasion, in the autumn of 1941, she escaped from there. She did not have money or any other belongings. Good-hearted Lithuanians, acquaintances and former gymnasium students would hide her. Once she telephoned student Bronius Elijošaitis, whom she had known since 1940, at his home. Having asked his mother, he invited her to stay with them. The family willingly received her and offered her a meal. Ona and Pranas Elijošaičiai provided her with a student certificate in the name of Marytė Šimukėnaitė and organized a group of wonderful devoted people who would in turn hide her in their homes. Among them were the noble-minded, good-hearted poet Kazys Jakubėnas, Zofija Paulauskienė, Jonas and Valerija Stepaičiai, Jonas Adomavičius, Feliksas Molskis, Vladas Mongirdas and others. Most of the time, however, Jocheved stayed at the Elijošaičiai. Juozas Vitas, one of the leaders of the anti-Nazi movement in Lithuania, was hiding in Elijošaičiai home from the autumn 1942. Ona Elijošaitienė was arrested for this and imprisoned in the ward of prisoners sentenced to death. In January 1944, she was deported without trial to Germany for labour, but managed to escape from there and in spring came back to Lithuania, hiding in the environs of Kaunas. Fortunately, at the moment of her arrest Jocheved was not at home, and she was lucky to survive to the end of the war.

From Hands Bringing Life and Bread, Volume 1,
The Vilna Gaon State Jewish Museum. Vilnius, 1997
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