Warsaw, 25 February 1946. Judge Stanisław Rybiński, delegated to the Commission for the Investigation of German Crimes, heard the person named below as a witness. Having been advised of the criminal liability for making false declarations and of the significance of the oath, the witness was sworn and testified as follows:
|Name and surname||Stanisław Bernat|
|Date of birth||23 April 1905|
|Parents’ names||Paweł and Ludwika, née Matacz|
|Education||department school in Bochnia|
|Place of residence||Włochy nr. Warsaw, Piłsudskiego Street 44, flat 1|
|Religious affiliation||Roman Catholic|
My son, Tadeusz Chyrnik, lived in Warsaw at Pańska Street 67, flat 64 (fifth floor) with his mother Emilia Chyrnik, my first, common-law wife. I was caught by the Germans in a street round-up and deported to Vienna. I stayed there from September 1942 until 1 February 1944. There, I was assigned to various kinds of work. Finally, at the very beginning of 1944, I returned to the country. My son was already there, and we often met.
I knew that my son was a member of an underground organization, but he rarely mentioned it. He admitted to being an instructor. He didn’t let me in on his activities. He said, however, that he disregarded danger. His mother worked as a cook in some German officers’ mess at Piłsudskiego Square, and the Germans would come to the flat she shared with our son. When I came back from Vienna, I lived in Włochy with my wedded wife and younger children.
On Saturday evening of 8 July 1944, between six and seven o’clock, the Germans and “Ukrainians” came to my son’s flat. The entire house was surrounded. At the time, the organization which was headed by my son was holding a meeting in his flat. Both my son and his friends who were then present worked in a German institution called Bruhn-Werke. The mother of my son was not present at the time. Apart from my son, the following boys were in the flat at that time:
1) Stanisław Zych,
2) Zdzisław Paczuski,
3) Zygmunt Gozdalik,
4) another Zych from Wolska Street.
I don’t remember the surname of the fifth boy.
The sixth was my son, Tadeusz Tomasz Chyrnik. My son was 19 years old. Paczuski was one year his senior, and the rest were the same age as my son. When the Germans, uniformed “Ukrainians” and the Blue Police approached the door of the flat in which my son and his friends were holding the meeting, they found the door locked. One of the boys opened the door, saw the police and immediately shut the door on them. Then the Germans fired a series of shots at the door and, from the street, at the window. The bullets pierced the door and two boys – my son and Zych whose name I didn’t find out – were mortally wounded, while the remaining four sustained lighter wounds. The assailants managed to enter the flat, and – as I learned from the women who lived in the same corridor – my son asked the Germans to finish him off. He died, and the Germans cut his watch strap and stole his watch. Then they transported the wounded boys to Pawiak prison, leaving the bodies of my son and Zych in the flat. At night, the Blue Police came to the flat and took the bodies to the morgue at Oczki Street.
This is all that I’ve learned from the neighbors of my son whose surnames I don’t know. Many details of this case are known to Zofia Zegarowska, who has lived at Twarda Street 18 ever since. I learned the above facts on the following day at 8.00 a.m. I came to Warsaw and went to the morgue, where I had to pay the undertaker for the funeral and additionally 5,000 zlotys, allegedly for buying out the body from the Germans.
I don’t know the surname of that undertaker.
When I saw the body of my son, I determined that he had a gunshot wound to the forehead. Zegarowska told me that he had received three other wounds to the chest and the stomach. I didn’t see them, as the body of my son was already in the coffin, clothed.
As for those four wounded boys whom the Germans took to Pawiak, shortly afterwards they were deported to the concentration camp in Gusen, only I am not sure whether all of them were deported there. I know that Zdzisław Paczuski was there because he sent a letter to his parents, who live at Sienna Street 59 in Warsaw. The boy hasn’t returned to date, and neither have the three other boys. All of them had been taken out of Warsaw before the Uprising broke out.
I know that when Stanisław Zych was incarcerated in Pawiak, he received packages from home. I don’t know anything about the two remaining boys.
I was taken by the Germans from the street in September 1942. After three days in the camp at Skaryszewska Street I was deported to Vienna. I worked at the post office there until I was allowed to return home.
When I came to the morgue to see the body of my son, I saw a lot of blood in the asphalted courtyard. The employees of the morgue told me that there had been many cases like that of my son in the previous days. Corpses of young men, both Poles and Germans, were being brought day in, day out.
The report was read out.