Stefan Supranowicz

* 1920

  • "When we started to attend school where there was the Black Madonna of Częstochowa picture on the school wall constantly. One day we came and looked at the wall and there was a the Stalin portrait under the glass in the frame. All of us who were there protested against it. If the Stalin picture had to be there, we were ready to make an additional frame for the Stalin picture but the Blessed Mary couldn’t be insult! That was the end. We appeared in school next day or another time (I can’t remember) and we were insulted to have a lesson with Mr. Sztrejt. We came and there was no picture on the wall, just a new frame made for the Stalin portrait. The school was situated in a private house and the householder was a carpenter so he made a new frame. That was the end of the matter. The teacher, Mr. Sztrejt didn’t even say a word, he didn’t interfere, he was sitting quiet. Another teacher, the Lithuanian one mentioned something, criticized, but just a bit. In general, the incident was over. Afterwards, at Easter, we had a dancing evening. There was this Lithuanian teacher and Mr. Sztrejt (the one who taught us the Russian) was there as well. Me and the rest of the boys were standing near the entrance and Mr. Sztrejt walked up to me ( I don’t know why it was me) and he took my hands and said to me in Polish, “Well done my boys! You did the right thing!”, he was talking about that picture incident. He reminded me about it because it took place in the Autumn, but it was the Springtime already. Telling those words he was already a bit drunk. “Well done my boys! You did the right thing!” – he said. There were a lot of people around watching us and nobody knew what was going on. They had never heard about the incident".

  • "We used to walk to work down the road just over there. The guards ride often came up from the village’s side. I used to say, “We’ve got the appropriate documents, nothing will happen, nothing to be scared of”. Once, two of us walked here, not far from the main road, down the path. We came across policemen with the guns on their arms (we called them “skrebuki”). They said something in Lithuanian. We showed our certification and one of the policeman said to another, “I would let them go”. My mate who was with me that day couldn’t understand Lithuanian so I told him what they just had said being sure they were going to leave us alone. We weren’t afraid of them. We were sure that these policemen would let us go. They must have applied that special procedure on purpose. They [ the policemen] drove us to the place up on the hill to some enclosure near the path. There was already a pretty big group of men on the farm. About twenty men, more or less, I can’t say. Then the policemen who brought us there, took us to see the chief. The chief was Lithuanian as well. The chief was informed that two people were brought. “ Absolve them”- he said. Thus I said to my fiend, “ They will let us go”. After that they hurried us to the place called Mejszagoły. There was the church and a small house, later the hospital was set here. The NKVD abode was there as well and we were locked and kept over three days utill the New Year’s Day. It could be a day before, perhaps 31st of December when they sent us on food to the prison in Łukiszki, in Vilnius. After five weeks’ walk (it might have been 5th of February) we finally reached Vilnius and walked down the Zawalne street ( it is called Pylimas street now). We walked along the street and the Soviets soldiers were collected from the all prisons in Vilnius, sitting on the horses with the guns on their backs moved on the both sides of the street. They were in their numbers, two thousand maybe. The street led us to the train station, pushed us into the carriages, the goods ones. Then we were driven deep into Russia".

  • "I came to Vilnius luckily. I got off the train, I walked through the city on food as I got to Wiłkomirska street, then I was given a lift in the lorry. Finally, I reached Mejszagoły. I stayed here in Mejszagoły in some woman’s house until it got dark as I was a runaway and if anybody stopped me on the way I would have no documents. When it got dark I set out from Majszagoły to my house on foot. It was ten kilometers away. I walked through the forest (the one you can see just over there) in the snow. When I came into my house it was pitch black. My mum was sitting by the stove, just a small lamp lit the room. I came in silently, I didn’t say a word. My mum’s sister used to live with us but that day she wasn’t at home as she visited the neighbours. Finally my Mum asked, “Is that you?” ( she thought her sister was here). I answered, “Yes, it’s me”. “Then you came back home luckily” – she answered".

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    Jawniuny, 13.06.2011

    duration: 02:02:57
    media recorded in project Oral History Archive - Budapest
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The street led us to the train station, pushed us into the carriages, the goods ones Then we were driven deep into Russia

Stefan Supranowicz
Stefan Supranowicz
photo: Pamět Národa - Archiv

He was born on 10 of January 1920 in Żubłędzie village in Mejszagoła commune. Żubłędzie was a village just next to the Polish - Lithuania border. Stefan Supranowicz completed four years of elementary school in his home village. Before 1939 he used to help on the farm and worked on the field. During the German occupation, he was supposed to be sent to works for the Third Reich but luckily he managed to avoid it and he came back home. At the turn of the year 1944 and 1945, Stefan Supranowicz was caught in a Soviet raid. He found himself in prison in Łukiszki. After a few weeks of interrogation he was deported to a work camp deep within Russia. He was kept in Stalinogorsk at first then he worked in two coal mines as a electrical pump operator. The prisoners working in the coal mine generally weren’t supervised so Stefan Supranowicz escaped. After coming back home, he stayed for a few months without any documents that caused some unpleasant and pretty dangerous situations. Thanks to the goodwill of the Soviet local officials and liying about being releasing from the camp, he finally got the appropriate documents. Afterwards Stefan Supranowicz worked in the kolkhoz. He did many various jobs, among others he worked in an administration of the kolkhoz. He lives in Jawniuny near Vilnius.