Vladislav Rzyman

* 1925

  • “They took us to France, for training... there were firing exercises... I used to go to the firing range with my father, and I knew how to shoot... the officers there checked how good a shot a person was... and I enjoyed it at first. One shot - ten, second shot - ten, and the man standing behind me said: ‘Amazing, amazing.’ And I realised they’d make use of me. I sent the last three shots wide. The commander’s curses were quick to follow... and then came the drill, the real drill.”

  • “That is the Danube’s estuary, where the ships coming up from the Black Swa were dragged along the shore on rails, so they could continue into Romania - the west. They took us all the way there... to the Iron Gates. We were joined by German sailors who’d had to abandon their ships. No one dragged them any more. We were sorry for them, they had lockers and lots of things to boot, a sailor picks up all kinds of things on the way.”

  • “I was raised as a Pole. When Těšín was divided into the Czech and Polish parts, I stayed on the Czech side. Dad’s brothers and sisters (Dad was one of twelve siblings), they were all on the Czech side. At the time, my father got into the Austrian army, and from there he was reassigned to the Polish army. Because he was in the garrison in Těšín... I came home in pretty bad shape after the war. Mum tended my wounds, they said: ‘Mother, keep him alive...’ Then I went to work for a firm that did electricity.”

  • Full recordings
  • 1

    Loukovec u Turnova, 25.04.2015

    duration: 01:31:01
    media recorded in project Stories of 20th Century
Full recordings are available only for logged users.

Try to never stick our, be neither too bad, nor too good...

Vladislav Rzyman 1943
Vladislav Rzyman 1943
photo: Archiv pamětníka

Vladislav Rzyman was born on 25 June 1925 into the family of Wladek Rzyman, an officer of the Polish army. His mother had trained as a seamstress. He spent his childhood together with his sister Stanislava. In the beginning of the war his father voluntarily signed up for forced labour in Germany because as an officer of the Polish army, he was in danger of receiving the death penalty. Vladislav’s mother took her children on a journey east, on foot. After three months they reached their native town. In 1943 Vladislav Rzyman, as a citizen of German Silesia, was drafted into the German army. He underwent training with mountain rangers in Austria and Germany, and he was then assigned to the French Pyrenees and the French midlands. He served as a field messenger. In 1944 he was transferred to Greece, where he fought against Greek partisans. He deserted the army and worked as a baker in Serbia. After the war he was employed as an electrician in Český Těšín. He and his wife raised two daughters, Uršula and Kristýna.