The Testimony of Sender Appelboim, 1989

On 28 August 1942 the Germans killed the Jews of Wlodzimierzec and its surroundings. Hundreds of Jews managed to escape from the place they were gathered. I was one of those who got away. During my flight I was wounded in the leg.

I spent one month wandering in the forest all alone. I ate berries and food I took from the Poles’ gardens. Polish friends of my parents gave me food and medicine.

After my father found me, we decided to go and ask a good friend of my father, Mefodiy Logatzky, for help. Mefodiy and his family lived in a small farm outside Długowola, 3 miles from Wlodzimierzec. We knew that during the night before the ghetto liquidation Mefodiy arrived at the home of the relatives of the Eisenberg family. He said that he knew the ghetto of Wlodzimierzec would be liquidated and offered them to escape at night. He was willing to hide them. The Eisenberg family did not act on his proposal and was killed by the Germans with the other Wlodzimierzec  Jews on the following day.

My father and I arrived at Mefodiy’s home during the night sometime in October 1942. He welcomed us with friendship and love and said that he was pleased that God has given him the privilege of saving Jews. Four other Jews were already in hiding at his place, and he was willingly adding another two. There was no shortage of food and God would help.

Mefodiy and his wife were Baptists and believed in the bible. They had two children: a 12-year-old girl and a 6-year-old boy. We washed and ate. Mefodiy treated my injured leg. For two weeks we hid in the barn next to his house.

The brothers Abraham and Ruben Susel were with us, as well as two sisters from the village of Długowola.

Mefodiy and his family would bring us food every day. Mefodiy treated my leg and kept our moral high. He said we were the remnants of the community, that we would survive and go to the Land of Israel.

Mefodiy’s farm was close to Wlodzimierzec. Ukrainian policemen were everywhere in the area looking for Jews. After two weeks my father and I decided to leave and not endanger Mefodiy and his family. Mefodiy asked us not leave and wanted us to stay until the end of the war. He was the only one from among the good people who helped us, who had asked us to stay with him until the end of the war.

The two brothers Susel and the two girls from Długowola left shortly after us. Eventually two Jewish brother named Srulik and Liova (I don’t remember their family name) came to his place. Ukrainians from Długowola denounced him to the Germans and said that he was hiding Jews.

In May 1943 at night, the Germans surrounded his home. A search was conducted and the two Jewish boys were found and executed. The murderers asked Mefodiy why he had hidden Jews. He responded: You can take my body, but not my soul. He endured the interrogation with great courage and was killed by the murderers….

I have decided to invite Feodor Lugatzky to visit Israel and to come to Yad Vashem. I request you most sincerely to do everything necessary to have the Lugatzky family recognized as Righteous.