So sad to hear about your mom. Was she Anna Frajlich the poet who
taught at Columbia University ? I'm sorry I missed the notice of her
death. I read about her in Nowy Dziennik, and my mom remembers when
she came to Buffalo with her readings.
--- In Kresy-Siberia@yahoogroups.com
, Lynda Kraar
> Dear Friends,
> I wanted to let you know that this weekend is the unveiling of
the headstone in memory of my mother, Ann Frajlich Siedlecki. We are
just packing up the family now and heading up from New Jersey for the
event, which is this coming Sunday. Following the unveiling we will
be reading from my mother's wartime memoir about Siberia, titled, "Be
> My mother was 14 years old when the war broke out. She and her
brother soon found themselves far away from their family, all of whom
remained in Poland until it was too late for them to get out. By 1943
they were never heard from again --vanished without a trace. My
mother's brother died after his "stint" in gulag, upon the Amnesty.
And so my mother at the age of 16 was left to fend for herself.
> During her adulthood in Canada, in the time that she became my
mother, she always taught me that Poland was a beautiful, enchanted
place. She longed to return for a visit, but we never could make that
happen, alas. Mum always fought for the rights of others who were
persecuted. She always kept an open mind about people and believed
that most people were good. This had been her personal experience and
this is how she managed to survive the war.
> My mother was outspoken when people she knew would make blanket
remarks about the Poles. She would also tell me that they spoke out
of anger and hurt, and that she could easily have made the same
remarks, but she truly did not believe that espousing hatred was
helpful. She walked the walk and did not just talk the talk.
> She was the first one to write to the newspapers when she felt
that an injustice had been done in a public forum. She always
defended those who were unjustly under attack and did give a hoot as
to what people thought of her actions -- although she was very
respected for being so bold as to say what others just thought.
> Over the years she was invited to address groups of students
about her wartime experience and was surprised at how many people had
never heard this story. I now have the boxes of letters that she
received from young people (and a few oldies!) who thanked her for
conveying her story to them.
> This is the very precious legacy that she has given to me, and
which I have passed along to my children. This is OUR time now -- we
can choose to do nothing or to help heal and move us all forward for
a better future. Doing nothing is the easy way out. It is so much
harder and requires so much more commitment to help promote good
relations and keep doors open, but when we really look at it, there
is no other choice if we all share the belief that we are here on
this earth for a good purpose.
> Please put my mother's memory in your prayers this weekend. She
was such a pure soul. I miss her so much and wonder how the world can
get any better with her voice now quiet.
> Lynda Kraar
> Lynda Kraar
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