Warsaw, 2 May 1946. Examining judge Halina Wereńko, delegated to the Commission for the Investigation of German Crimes, interviewed the person named below as a witness. The witness was advised of the criminal liability for making false declarations and of the significance of the oath. The judge took an oath therefrom, following which the witness testified as follows:
|Name and surname||Alojzy Florian Łabędzki|
|Parents’ names||Tomasz and Florentyna|
|Date of birth||4 May 1879 in Chmielnik, district of Końskie|
|Education||Medical Department in Kraków and Kijów|
|Place of residence||Pruszków, Klonowa Street 7|
During the German occupation I worked as a railway doctor on the premises of the railway workshops in Pruszków.
On the morning of 6 August 1944, together with Dr Szupryczyński, also a railway doctor, I was summoned to the commissar of the township of Pruszków, Bock, who met with us in the company of the head of the Arbeitsamt, Polland, and Bock’s secretary, Laufer; I don’t remember who else was present on the part of the Germans. Father Tyszka, called upon by the Main Welfare Council, was also present on the part of the Poles. Bock gave Dr Szupryczyński and me a written instruction, pursuant to which Dr Szupryczyński and I were allowed to enter the premises of the railway workshops. Laufer explained to me that a transit camp for Varsovians would be set up there, and Dr Szupryczyński and I were to be present there.
Since the first transport was due to arrive on the same day, Dr Szupryczyński, myself, and representatives of the Main Welfare Council proceeded to the workshops in the afternoon and waited all night for the arrival of the Varsovians. The transport came at dawn the next day and at a guess contained more than two thousand people from Wola. These people were in a terrible state. They had arrived on foot; one or two carts carried the weaker ones. On one of the carts a few people had died. The Varsovians were housed in the workshop halls.
At the time my role was to see to the sick, who would come up to my table. It was not only the sick who swarmed towards me, but also those who wanted to escape from the camp.
Making use of the fact that, as a railway doctor, I had forms with a German letterhead, I wrote out certificates and sick notes both for those who were actually ill, and for young people who would feign contagious diseases. The "sick" were loaded onto carts and transported out of the camp gate – some to the hospital, while others went free. But people were careless and would jump off the carts and run immediately outside the gate.
The gendarmes caught on. After a few days (five or seven), together with Dr Szupryczyński, I had freed five thousand "sick" people, mainly on the basis of contagious diseases. It was stated that the patients were being sent to the hospital in Milanówek. However, after a few days the gendarmes went to Milanówek and established that there was no contagious diseases hospital there, while the existing hospitals had only a small number of Varsovians. Thus they returned to the workshops and detained me under guard. I understood that I would be shot as soon as the Germans found the other male physician and two female doctors who were also writing out certificates for "sick" Varsovians. Luckily, while I was standing under guard, I was approached by a German doctor, Lambert, whom I had not seen previously. He was a Warsaw sanitary doctor from the governor’s office or from Fischer’s administration. He asked me whether dressings were available at the workshops. I told him that we have nothing. He then instructed me to accompany him to a pharmacy, where we would both collect drugs. Without any opposition on the part of the gendarme guards, he took me to his car and we left.
From this moment on, neither I nor Dr Szupryczyński would appear frequently at the camp. At first I did not observe any other physicians in the camp, but on the next day quite a few arrived, as well as many female nurses. All these people entered the camp wearing white gowns, receiving passes from the administrative office of the camp commandant.
It was only after the business concerning myself that the Germans introduced stricter discipline, posting an armed soldier at every barrack and making it more difficult to obtain passes. In any case, during this initial phase of the camp’s existence, the Germans did not make any concerted sanitary or medical effort on its premises.
People helped the Varsovians spontaneously. There were no dressings. After I had left the camp, I organised the delivery of dressings obtained from various pharmacies. Later (I don’t remember the date) medical assistance for the refugees was organised by the Germans. A German doctor was assigned to each barrack, and he would be assisted in the examination of patients by Polish physicians; only when their opinion was confirmed by the German could a person receive a sick note. By that time dressings had already been sent in from Warsaw, and numerous doctors and female nurses had also come in from the city; they were employed on purpose, in order to protect them against deportation to Germany. One known activist was Dr Kiełbasińska, whose current address I do not remember.
The report was read out.