born November 2, 1921
Celina Goz´dzikowska, Warsaw 1939 (private collection)
After receiving her high school diploma, Celina Goz´dzikowska trained as a chemist in Warsaw. In 1943, she was employed by a German company as an office clerk.
After the Warsaw uprising in August 1944, Celina Goz´dzikowska suffered the same fate as tens of thousands of the city’s inhabitants. The Germans deported the twenty-two-year-old via the Prusków transit camp near Warsaw to Auschwitz. In October, she was transferred as one of 200 women from Auschwitz to a Flossenbürg subcamp in Plauen. They worked and slept in a former cotton mill that had been taken over by the Osram company. In twelve-hour day and night shifts, the women produced special light bulbs for submarines. In April 1945, an air raid severely damaged the factory, whereupon the SS evacuated the camp. Celina Goz´dzikowska hid in the building’s basement, and then escaped. She was thus spared the death march that cost many prisoners their lives.
Celina Goz´dzikowska and Tadeusz Wojnarowicz on the repatriation journey to Poland, Weiden 1945 (private collection)
After liberation, Goz´dzikowska met the former Polish prisoner of war Tadeusz Wojnarowicz in the Upper Palatinate. Together, they returned to Poland and married. On her return, Goz´dzikowska learned that her bother had died at the Dachau concentration camp. Celina Wojnarowicz worked as a food chemist until her retirement.