Rescuers of Jews

Kėrys Povilas

Povilas Kėrys, Elena Kėrienė
Birutė Kėrytė-Varnelienė
Aldona Kėrytė-Mizerienė

Povilas and Elena Kėrys with their daughters - Birute, Aldona and the youngest Elena lived in their farm in the village of Kailiniai, close to Lazdijai. They knew well the Kuleski family who lived in Lazdijai.
Eighteen-year-old Miriam Kuleski escaped from the mass killings of Lazdijai and Veisiejai Jews place in Katkiškė on November 3, 1941, and fled to the Grodno ghetto.
There she married Gary Gold.
In February 1943 the young couple came to the home of the Kėrys family, asking for help. Povilas and Elena agreed to hide Miriam and her husband on their farm. The Golds hid in the barn and the whole Kėrys family took care of them. When there were no strangers around, Miriam and her husband helped their hosts with the housework and on the farm.
For a short period of time the Kėrys family sheltered Meir Chmilevsky, another Jew from Veisiejai, who also survived and immigrated to Argentina.
In July 1944, as the front drew closer, Povilas Kėrys built a dugout in the woods where the rescued were hidden during the last weeks before the liberation of the area from Nazi occupation jn July 31, 1944.
In 1945, the Gold couple left Lithuania and settled in the United States.
The Kėrys family was exiled to Siberia by the Soviets in 1948, and it took the Golds almost 40 years to find them again.
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