Rescuers of Jews

“I was bold then and I feared nothing...” /Felicija Radavičienė (Klimaitė)

Felicijana KLIMIENĖ (1901–1966)
Petras KLIMAS (1904–1980)

Testimony of Felicija Radavičienė (Klimaitė):

Our family – father Petras Klimas (1904-1980), mother Felicijana Klimienė (1901-1966), brother Juozas (born 1933) and I, Felicija (born 1929), lived in Pabutkalnis village, Užventis subdistrict, Kelmė district.
When the war started, my father Petras Klimas brought more than 20 Jews in his carriage from Luokė: he was asked by doctor Girbudas to accept them. All of them were accommodated in the barn on hay. For a dew days, the Jews stayed with us, but later we distributed them among other farmers – Baliutavičius, Taranda, Juškevičius, Černiauskas, Šarkauskas.
The following people hid with us:
Rachel Kacav (she had a different surname then – Songaila might know it, because he lived in her house in Užventis);
Eshter Blecher with her mother-in-law, who was an old woman – the oldest of all people who lived with us;
Mrs. Magidienė with her son (about 6 years old boy). After the war, Magidienė left for Africa;
A woman with a child whose name I do not recall;
Bliuma Šachnovičienė with her sister Chaja also stayed with us. After the war, she got married, lived in Vilnius and had two kids. Later she left for Israel and now she is dead. Her sons live in the USA and her daughter is in Israel;
There were also two young men from Kelmė; one of them was called Jankelis.
I was about 12 years old at that time. I would carry Rachel’s or other people’s letters to their relatives and acquaintances who were living in other families – Baliutavičius or Taranda. This is how they kept in touch. I would also take them to other farmsteads if need be – we would often walk across the forest at night. I was bold then and feared nothing.
Rachel and Eshter stayed with us for a longer period. Maybe someone else too, I do not recall all of them. Magidienė also stayed in our home for quite some time. Once, Rachel had to flee to the forest: Bartkus, the hitman, came and Rachel was at home, so I told her quickly about him, opened the window and she escaped to the forest. Bartkus lived in Junkilai village about 5 kilometres away. I also know that Jankauskas used to shoot people too. He was shot after the war, but I do not know what came of Bartkus – I did not inquire.
I went to Užventis secondary school together with Genutė Černiauskytė, daughter of rescuers Černiauskas. I would take people to the Černiauskas family too.
This is all I can remember about the rescuing of the Jews. I used to exchange letters with Rachel Kacav. I was an accountant, but I am retired now.
In 1993, my parents and I were awarded the medals of the Righteous Among the Nations.

Vilnius, 2 November 2004

You are currently using the mobile version of this website.

Switch to mobile view
Mobile version