Rescuers of Jews

Gylys Leonas

Leonas Gylys and Aleksandra Gylienė

During the German occupation, Leonas & Aleksandra Gylys lived in the town of Raseiniai. They were acquainted with Tsipora Horonzhitsky, who lived in Kaunas. In spring 1944, when the Kaunas ghetto was about to be liquidated, Tsipora found a way to contact Gylienė and ask for her help. Taking a great personal risk, and asking nothing in return, Gylienė and her husband came to Horonzhitsky’s aid and organized the escape of a group of Jews from the ghetto, which included Tsipora and Meir Horonzhitsky, Tsipora’s sisters Hana Judelevich and Sara Brit with their mother Mina Vinnik; Sara’s husband Tuvia Brit, Sonya-Jaffa Ceikinski (later Zolin), Betsalel Smeyatsky, Meir and Dina Faktorovsky and Hanoch Glikman. The Gylys couple accepted the Jewish refugees in their home for several days until safer shelters were found for them – one at Ramanauskases farm, situated 8 km from Raseiniai, and another – at Anele Tarapienė’s house, in the suburbs of town. Till the end of the German occupation in October 1944 the Gylys couple generously helped Ramanauskas with food for the rescued. After the war the Gylys couple and their children immigrated to the USA and maintained close contacts with the rescued, who found their way to Israel.

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