Warsaw, 16 February 1946. Judge Stanisław Rybiński, delegated to the Commission for the Investigation of German Crimes, interviewed the person named below as a sworn witness. Having been advised of the obligation to speak the truth and of the criminal liability for making false declarations, and having sworn the oath, the witness testified:

Name and surname Kazimiera Bułka née Piwnicka
Date of birth 1 January 1900
Names of parents Jan and Waleria née Kiełs
Occupations homemaker
Education two years of elementary school
Place of residence Warsaw, Ogrodowa Street 50, flat 5
Religious affiliation Roman Catholic
Criminal record none

I have come to the office of the Commission as a result of the announcement published in the daily newspapers. I am presenting my identity card N 597253 (presented).

In 1944, I lived in Warsaw at Żabia Street 7 together with my six children – four sons and two daughters. One of my sons was Ryszard Czesław Bułka (born 4 January 1926). He completed elementary school and three years of vocational school – the last in 1943 – and started an internship as a turner at Dorling’s factory (Okopowa Street 35).

On 16 January 1944, a Sunday, my son Ryszard Czesław left home after dinner around 3:00 p.m., intending to go to church and then to the cinema. A moment later, my neighbor Jan Wolski (now deceased, he was killed in the uprising) told me to quickly go outside because my son had been captured and was being taken away. So I ran out of the house in the direction indicated and, indeed, on the corner of Bielańska Street and Teatralny Square I saw my son and another young man standing by the wall, facing it. They were guarded by four Gestapo men with skulls on their hats, armed with rozpylacze, [automatic weapons]; two others were standing in a nearby yard.

I turned to my son and he explained that he had been stopped on Senatorska Street, next to Saint Antony’s Church, his documents had been checked and taken from him, along with 55 złotys. Then, he told me to say goodbye to all our relatives on his behalf because he was going to “die like a Pole.” I assured him I would try to get him out. One of the Gestapo men guarding him, on my request to let my son go, said he had not been alone. The other young man, who was arrested with my son, said nothing and turned away when I asked him whether I should help him somehow or let his relatives know.

After the arrest, my son was in Pawiak prison, and two days later I took a package to the Patronat on Krochmalna Street for him. The package was accepted. I realized that my son was in prison. At the same time, I started making efforts to get him released. I learned from my sister, Jadwiga Pietryniak, that engineer Działkowski, who ran a private workshop and who had managed to get my sister’s friend out of prison before, could procure my son’s release.

I went to the engineer to ask him to try to intervene on my son’s behalf. Działkowski promised to make an effort, and the secret organization which my son had joined not long before his arrest promised to pay. Działkowski kept assuring me that they would release my son. However, when I took another package to the Patronat, I was told that my son was no longer on the list of prisoners and the package was not accepted. Nevertheless, I went there a few more times with more packages, but still they wouldn’t take them. On 2 February 1944, a list of those killed in public executions and a list of hostages who would be pardoned were published throughout the city. The surname of my son, Ryszard Czesław, was on the latter, under number 16. Soon after, a new notice was published, stating that a few Germans had been killed again and that those meant to be pardoned had been executed. After this notice, the Germans did not publish any more notices about executed hostages.

I never received any message about my son, although engineer Działkowski assured me that my son, Ryszard Czesław, had not been killed, but was still alive and would soon return home from prison. He told me to prepare a small package with underwear, clothes, and shoes. These could be no matter what, because the point was for my son to be able to get dressed and walk across the city. He also warned me that my son should not come home but settle somewhere far away so that he isn’t recognized. Aside from this, the organization gave Działkowski 500 złotys to feed my son, which he told me about, at the same time informing me that the package had gone through and that the money had gone towards different things, but he could give it back, if need be.

However, a month or two before the uprising in Warsaw, as I was later told by Działkowski’s deputy at the former’s mechanical workshop at Złota Street 6 (now destroyed), by foreman Jasiński, and by the concierge of that house (I don’t know where they live now, nor do I know the name of the concierge), engineer Działkowski himself was arrested and executed. He lived in his own villa in Podkowa Leśna and his wife still lives there.

I did not apply to the Gestapo for a certificate that my son was dead, nor did I receive such a certificate.

After the outbreak of the uprising in Warsaw, my second son, Zdzisław Bułka, aged 17, was killed fighting as an insurgent. He fought between Krucza and Hoża streets, and fell, as his friends stated (I don’t know their surnames), but his corpse has not been found.

My daughter, Halina Janina Bułka (born on 13 September 1929) happened to be staying at my sister’s, Jadwiga Pietryniak’s, at Twarda Street 24 and, as I learned from my sister-in- law, Anna Piwnicka (still residing at Bema Street 80), was seen walking with my sister along Bema Street towards Warsaw West station; both of them were deported to Germany. In January 1945, my sister’s neighbor (I don’t know the name, resident at Twarda Street 24), who was also in Germany at the time, was in correspondence with them. However, by January 1945, my sister and daughter, although both healthy and working in a paper mill (I do not know in what town) still had not returned to Poland and had not sent me any news of themselves.

I do not know the name of my sister’s friend whom engineer Działkowski helped to get out of prison.

I would like to add that the names of those executed were not listed on the last notice, nor on the one on which my son was listed as a hostage.

My neighbor, Jan Wolski, was killed in front of my eyes on 7 August during the uprising, by a German or Ukrainian soldier, when his reply to a soldier provoked dissatisfaction.

I do not know where my son Ryszard Czesław could have been executed.

Read out.