Rescuers of Jews

Kasperaitienė Sofija

Basia Abelmanaite, was born in 1914 in the cabman's family. Before the Nazi occupation she lived with her parents in Imbare village, Salantai parish, Kretinga district. In June, 1941 Basia and her parents were arrested. The parents were shot and Basia managed to escape. All the Jews of Imbare and Salantai villages were driven to synagogue of Salantai (where today the "culture center" is set).
After ten days the group of girls, including Basia, was transferred to Šalyna farmstead (men working there previously were shot already).
The farmers of the surroundings were allowed to take Jewish girls to their villages for works. Pranas Kasperaitis, the peasant living in Imbare village, brought Basia to his farm.
After four weeks working there Basia had to return to Šalyna farmstead. The Jewish girls gathered in Šalyna were condemned to be shot. However Basia managed to escape from the pit of the mutual grave and to run at nighttime several kilometers reaching Pranas and Sofia Kasperaitis' farm. Basia hid at this family during three years, till the Germans withdraw from Zemaitija.
Kasperaitis family sheltered Rapolas Verzbolauskas also. The Salantai authorities were cooperative to his Lithuanian wife and asked the Kretinga district commandant to allow Rapolas not to join other Jews in the synagogue. (Verzbolauskas had merits for the Lithuanian Republic authorities but another reason was told to the German commandant – the severe disease). Rapolas was allowed to live freely for few weeks. However, some day it became clear that he would not avoid death. Then Sofia Kasperaitiene's nephew brought Rapolas to his aunt's house in Imbare.
After the war the total Kasperaitis' family was exiled to Siberia. Rapolas Verzbolauskas and especially Basia Abelmanaite-Jankeloviciene tried to release their rescuers but all these efforts were spent in vain.
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