On 6 January 1945 in Radom, Investigating Judge Kazimierz Borys of the II District of the Regional Court in Radom with its seat in Radom interviewed the person mentioned hereunder as a witness, without taking an oath. Having been advised of the criminal liability for making false declarations, the witness testified as follows:
|Name and surname||Stefan Komar|
|Age||38 years old|
|Parents’ names||Piotr and Marianna|
|Place of residence||Firlej, commune of Wielogóra|
|Criminal record||punished with a term of imprisonment of seven days|
|Relationship to the parties||none|
During the German occupation, I lived in the school building in Firlej. In June 1940, I was arrested by the Germans and deported for labor. I returned to Poland in December 1940. The Germans had me deported once again in March 1941. This time, I returned to Poland only in December 1942. Both before I was transported to Germany and after coming back, I witnessed with my own eyes how the Germans drove covered trucks, filled with people, from the direction of Radom towards the sands of Firlej. In 1940, before I was sent to Germany, I saw a covered truck proceeding in the direction of Firlej. The vehicle was followed by a taxi with Gestapo men armed with machine guns. I didn’t witness the killing of their victims. I only heard the shots. Although in 1940 I myself only once saw a truck carrying victims to Firlej, I heard from others that in 1940 this route was very much frequented. After returning from the Reich in 1942, I would see covered trucks escorted by Germans riding in a taxi in the direction of the sands a few times a week. These transports continued in the autumn of 1943. Sometimes the Germans would take single persons to Firlej by taxi and shoot them there.
During the initial period of executions, the Germans would first arrive in the morning hours and dig pits, and bring in their victims only in the afternoon; the hapless people were taken from the trucks, arranged along the edges of the hollows, and dispatched with shots to the back of the head. They had their hands tied behind their backs, and were also tied up in fours. If any of them resisted and refused to proceed, he would be pushed. None of the victims uttered a sound. They gave the impression as if they had been anesthetized with some sort of injections.
Later, the condemned men were forced to dig their own graves in the sand just before being executed, although there were instances when the Germans themselves dug the pits after having brought the victims to Firlej, directly in their presence.
I myself once witnessed a man at whom one of the Gestapo functionaries had just fired jump up from the hole into which he had fallen following the discharge. Without further ado, the Gestapo man who had fired the shot – or maybe one who was standing closer to the victims – kicked him, forcing him back down into the pit. But the victim jumped up yet again. The Gestapo man kicked him once more, while his colleague – the one who had fired the first shot – walked up and fired at him again.
This execution took place in the winter of 1942/1943. At the time, 12 people were brought in to Firlej. Since there was a strong blizzard, the victims were led out close to the road leading to the sands, and shot and buried there. After the Germans left, I went up to the execution site and saw traces of blood in the snow.
In the autumn of 1943, the residents of Firlej and Wincentów whose houses were located near the sands were expelled.
From that time on until April 1944, the road between Radom and Firlej was much frequented. The Germans brought in truckloads of wood and some other materials. They then screened the sands, or rather one location, with mats and started burning something there. From afar you could see a tall column of fire and smell the stench of decaying bodies being burned. In all probability, they had dug up and were incinerating the corpses of the murdered victims. These burnings lasted day and night until April 1944. There were guard posts all over the sands.
Executions continued to be carried out in parallel, however, for you could see trucks loaded with people driving in the direction of Firlej, and hear shots coming from that direction.
The executions were continued in 1944. By then, we had got used to the mundaneness of what was going on.
The Germans continued shooting people right until they were forced to evacuate Radom.
I cannot give an exact figure for the number of those murdered in Firlej. They were killed with shots to the back of the head, or at least such was the method used in the executions that I personally witnessed.